Not all homeowners insurance policies are created equal. Just by talking to your independent agent and securing a policy that is the best fit for your individual needs, you can save hundreds of dollars per year on insurance payments. Here are five tips to help you discover how to start saving now:
1. Deductibles: Think about raising yours from the industry recommended standard of $500 to $1,000, if you can logically afford to do so in the event of a claim. This can actually be a big source of savings all on its own. Ask your agent about the cost difference between the two. You may be surprised at how much you can save. Also, be aware that depending on what area of the country you live in, separate deductibles may exist based on the natural disaster potential, such as floods, earthquakes, wind and other not-so-cute temper tantrums of nature.
2. Bundle: Yes, just like bundling your phone, television and Internet from the same provider saves you money, so does bundling your home and auto insurance policies. Most companies will offer anywhere from 5 to 15 percent savings by bundling policies.
3. Discounts: Ask about what you can do to save money on your insurance policies. Different companies offer different discounts for different reasons. For instance, installing security systems and special locks may entitle you to savings on your home insurance. Several other discounts may exist depending on your exact situation. You may even be entitled to a discount if you are an existing customer of the same insurer for an extended period of time. It never hurts to ask.
4. Review: Take a few minutes every year to review your policy with your agent and make sure that you still need all the same coverage. You may no longer need "floaters," which cover luxury items like jewelry and high-end electronics that aren't covered by standard policies.
5. Call an Agent: Sure, you could take the time out of your busy schedule to personally make phone calls, search websites and conduct other research that will give you the best deal on the most comprehensive policy possible. But why would you? Let an independent insurance agent do all that leg work for you. It's a fast paced world we live in, complete with ten hour workdays, long commutes, healthy dinners to prepare and homework to help with. Why not let an insurance agent get the best deal for you without the added tedium?
Homeowners insurance can be a saving grace in a time of need, but choose wisely to make sure you have the correct and most affordable policy for your needs.