If you’re in the process of buying a home, you’re not alone — in 2017 alone, the national homeownership rate reached 64.2%, meaning there has been a lot of people buying homes within the past few years. And while buying a house involves making a lot of decisions, choosing homeowners insurance is one of the most important decisions you’ll make. To make sure you get the right coverage and insurance rate, here are a few questions to ask potential homeowners insurance companies.
What exactly does the policy cover? One of the most obvious questions you need to ask is regarding what the policy does, and does not, cover. Not all insurance policies are created equal and you should never assume that just because one policy covers a certain type of damage that another one will, too. So make sure to ask which types of damages are covered, whether the policy covers replacement cost or actual cash value, and if there is a limit on the coverage for luxury items.
How are claims handled? Should you ever actually need to file an insurance claim, you need to know how your insurance company goes about handling claims. You should ask how you can reach the company outside of business hours, whether or not they’re available 24/7, and the average wait time for settlements. Additionally, make sure you find out how filing a claim will impact your premium when it’s time to renew your policy.
Can I save any money on my policy? Most homeowners insurance companies will tell you a few possible ways to save a few bucks if you ask. One option is to bundle your car and home insurance, which can save money and be more convenient. There may also be discounts for first-time customers or even if you’re buying your first home. And you can possibly choose a higher deductible, which will cost more money upfront but can save you money later on.
It’s important to choose a homeowners insurance policy that is right for you. So make sure to meet with potential homeowners insurance companies, ask them these questions, and choose the policy that covers your wants and needs.