Homeowners Insurance: The Basics


Seven questions to ask when researching homeowners insurance policy options  If you are a current homeowner or hope to be one in the near future, knowing the facts about homeowners insurance is a helpful and important step toward protecting your home and family’s belongings.

Seven questions to ask when researching homeowners insurance policy options

If you are a current homeowner or hope to be one in the near future, knowing the facts about homeowners insurance is a helpful and important step toward protecting your home and family’s belongings.

Know what you need and what to ask when you start researching homeowners insurance options.

  1. How much coverage do you need? Evaluate the market value of your home, the cost to rebuild your home, and complete a household inventory of your belongings. Then, you can decide on the general amount of coverage you are looking for. There are other variables the insurance company may look at, such as the size of your home, how close it is to a fire hydrant, if any claims have been filed on the home by previous owners, etc. to determine your premium.

In some cases, your lender decides how much coverage you need and may require you to buy a policy that covers at least the amount of the mortgage.

For more information on what insurance scores are and why they matter read this article.

  1. How much of your possessions will your insurance policy cover? Homeowners insurance will automatically cover your possessions, based on a specific percentage of your home’s established insurance value – the average percentage of coverage is about 75 percent. But with particularly valuable things like jewelry and artwork, it is a good idea to get additional coverage for these items.
  1. How much can you afford in a deductible? The deductible is the amount you will have to pay out of pocket on each claim and applies only to the coverage your homeowners policy provides. Make sure you are comfortable paying the deductible amount in the event you have to file a claim.
  1. Does the insurance company you are considering have a good history and positive consumer reviews? The National Association of Insurance Commissioners Consumer Information Resource provides a complaint record for insurers so you can check out their background before making a decision.

Go beyond the basics. A basic homeowners insurance policy may not give you the entire coverage you need or are looking for.

  1. Do you have coverage to bring your home up to code following a covered loss? Should something happen that damages your home, such as a grease fire, and a new code regulation is passed requiring additional features in the same area of the loss, such as mandatory installation of a sprinkler system, this work may be covered.
  1. Do you have coverage for damage due to falling debris? If a branch falls on your home or some other kind of debris damages your roof, these damages may be covered by your policy.
  1. Do you have coverage for damage due to a power outage? When you lose power due to natural disasters, such as ice storms or hurricanes, you may be covered for perishable items from your refrigerator/freezer.

The most important thing in the selection process for your homeowners insurance it to be educated on what there is out there and make sure you are asking your agent the right questions to get the best coverage for your situation. Contact Colonial Lloyds at 1-800-937-6213 for a quote, toll free, or request a quote online here.

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