You do not have to be an expert on homeowners insurance just to make an informed purchase. As a wise consumer, it is important to read home insurance policies in detail and ask the important questions before you build a comprehensive insurance policy that will provide you with protection.
While premium is important, knowing how your policy will afford you coverage is more important. Insurance agents are licensed and trained experts on the subject. Here are 5 questions you should not forget to ask your agent to ensure that you are purchasing the right policy from the right insurer.
Questions To Ask Your Home Insurance Agent:
1. How much would it cost to rebuild my home in its current condition and location if it were a total loss?
One of the primary purposes of buying home insurance is to insure your home against total loss. You have the option to choose your dwelling limit, which will be the total amount the insurance company will pay for materials and labor to rebuild your home. If you are not familiar with home building costs in your neighborhood, ask your agent to help you calculate the cost to rebuild per square foot.
2. How much will you need to replace your personal belongings if they were destroyed?
Personal property coverage pays to repair or replace all of your personal belongings that are not attached to the dwelling. While the average home insurance policy provides you with 75% of your dwelling coverage to replace your belongings, this limit may need to be raised if you have a lot of valuables. Ask your agent for a home inventory checklist so that you can determine if you have enough coverage.
3. How much liability coverage do I need if something happens on or away from my property?
Liability coverage will protect you against lawsuits for property damage and injury. Liability pays for judgments and the cost to defend you in court. If you are not sure how much coverage you need, ask your agent. The standard home policy will provide $100,000 in coverage.
4. Do I need to add flood and earthquake coverage?
Homeowners insurance excludes losses that are caused by earthquake or flood. To protect yourself against these losses, you need to purchase a specialty flood and earthquake insurance policy. Specialized coverage is often recommended by the most seasoned property insurance agents.
5. Do we qualify for any discounts?
There are a number of ways you can reduce your home insurance premiums with discounts. Fire sprinklers, smoke detectors, alarm systems, monitoring services, a new roof, and gated entry can all qualify you for discounts. Ask about the discounts available through the insurer and make sure you take advantage of all of the discounts that you qualify for.
Make sure you ask the right questions when you are selecting an insurance contract. By getting informed, you can avoid building a policy that does not provide you adequate protection and peace of mind.