Homeowners Insurance Basics

homeowner basic

Why is Homeowners Insurance important?

Your home is more than just a roof over your head.  Chances are, it’s your most valuable investment. Before you sign papers for that new home, you’ll want to think about protecting your investment against unforeseen circumstances. Homeowners insurance provides peace of mind, covering damages to your property and risk of liability.

What is it exactly?

Homeowners insurance is a multi-line policy, meaning that the premiums, or regularly scheduled payments made to the insurer, cover both property and liability insurance. The premium is usually determined by your policy coverage cost.

4 Reasons to Buy Homeowners Insurance:

1. To provide property coverage – A basic homeowner’s policy provides coverage for the dwelling, outbuildings (like garages, sheds, and gazebos), and your personal property (including furniture and clothes) in case of fire, theft, wind, or hail.

2. To provide liability coverage – Liability coverage includes any lawsuits filed against you. Meaning, if someone falls and breaks their arm on your property, you’d have liability protection through your home policy.

3. To provide loss of personal items coverage – This includes up to 70% compensation for furniture, clothes, and keepsakes that have been stolen or lost due to disaster. Keep an inventory of possessions (on video if you’d like) and store it safely off-premises.

4. To satisfy your mortgage lender – Buying homeowners insurance isn’t required by law, but if you have a mortgage, your lender will likely require you to insure the home so they can protect their investment. Even if you don’t have a mortgage, homeowners insurance is almost always a wise purchase that can safeguard your finances.

Additionally, policies typically cover your hotel, and other miscellaneous expenses should you be forced to live elsewhere while your home is rebuilt or repaired. But prior to purchasing a policy, take time to ask about time frames and the specific limits of what is and isn’t covered.

What factors can affect premiums?

  • Home Features and Characteristics — Your home\’s age, type of structure, wiring, roof, garage, etc., can affect your premium. Older homes can often cost more to insure, and those costs can differ depending on whether your home is brick, frame, stone or has synthetic siding.
  • Location — Where your home is located can affect your homeowners insurance premium. For instance, your home insurance rate can be affected if your home is in close proximity to a fire station; is exposed to extreme weather, such as hurricanes, tornadoes or earthquakes; or is in a neighborhood more prone to theft.
  • Protective Devices — Burglar alarm systems, smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, sprinkler systems, and deadbolt locks… all of these protective devices can lower your homeowners insurance premium.
  • Personal Factors — What you do can affect your homeowners insurance premium, too. For instance, smokers may pay more for home insurance than nonsmokers. Good credit history also can lower what you pay for home insurance.
  • Claims History — If you have a history of claims on a homeowners insurance policy, you may pay a higher premium.

In addition to the factors listed above, the level of coverage also makes an impact on your premium cost.

Consider these coverage options:
  1. Actual Cash Value — covers what the house might be worth, but not what it would cost to rebuild it. Say you wanted to sell your home tomorrow, and it’s worth $85,000. But if it burns to the ground and the cost to rebuild is $150,000, you risk not having enough coverage.
  2. Replacement Cost  — covers repair and rebuilding costs, even if they exceed the market value of your home, and it takes care of things like removal of debris and basement repairs. Although most buyers opt for basic policies, some mortgage companies require that you have replacement cost coverage.

Protection for Life.

For far too many homeowners, insurance is just another piece of paper that is signed and filed away, rarely to be thought of again. People who wait until they experience a loss before analyzing their own policies are not getting the full value out of their countless premium payments.

Boyd Insurance & Investments is here to provide you with Protection for Life through all of life’s unforeseen circumstances. Our agents are knowledgeable and will help navigate your policies with you. Call (941) 745-8300 or click here to receive an online quote!

Your future starts now. Ready to begin?

Fill out our online Quote Request Form to let us protect you for life.

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