Now that you’ve found your perfect piece of paradise, it’s time to start protecting your assets with homeowner’s insurance (HOI).
Homeowner’s insurance is a package policy that covers both damage to your property and your liability, or legal responsibilities, for any injuries and/or property damage you or other members of your family cause to other people. This also includes damage caused by household pets.
A standard policy insures both the home itself and the things you keep in it by providing financial protection against disasters. However, keep in mind that damage caused by most disasters is covered but there are exceptions – such as flood, earthquakes, and poor maintenance. There are two separate policies for flood and earthquake coverage, and maintenance-related problems are the homeowners’ responsibility.
Finding the Right Policy
To an insurer, you are considered a set of risks, and premiums are determined based upon your “risk-factors”. Risk-factors may include your sex, age, marital status, and the neighborhood in which your home is. However, each insurer differs. It is important to compare quotes from at least four different carriers in order to find the best deal and save some money on your policy in the long run.
Unfortunately, a low price does not necessarily guarantee a bargain. Be sure to research the insurer’s record for claims service, as well as its financial stability, and always ask for a discount. Thousands of dollars are wasted on a regular basis because people simply do not ask. Also, before you choose a policy, know the replacement value of your home by contacting a local builder who will be able to provide the best estimate.
Making a Claim
Before making a claim, be sure that your policy is up to date and that you have reviewed it in its entirety so that there are no surprises. Surprises that many of my clients come across are the deductible, so be sure to know what yours is before filing. Try not to consider your insurer as a friend. The value of fair compensation to you may not be the same as to the insurer. The insurer’s job is to restore you financially, but it is your job to be able to prove your losses so you get what you need.
My Recommendations To My Clients
I generally recommend State Farm to my clients because they are “direct writers”, meaning that they are a company that deals directly with consumers without using independent agents. In theory, they can pass on their savings by eliminating the middleman.
To learn more about HOI with State Farm, feel free to contact the agent Lance Matsumura, whom I’ve been working with for the last 25+ years.