5 Tips For First-Time Home Insurance Buyers
When you purchase your home, you should always factor in the cost of homeowners insurance onto the mortgage payment you will have. Most of the time, your lender will not even authorize a loan until you show some proof of insurance. But if this is your first time buying it, you may be confused about what you need, why you need it, and where to get it.
Do You Need Home Insurance?
The simple answer to this is YES. If you own a home or are paying on a contract to own a home, you should have a good home insurance policy in place. Even if your lender does not ask for you to have it, which will probably never happen, you should have some type of coverage. There are so many things that could go wrong throughout the life of the house.
Natural disasters happen every day worldwide, and you never honestly know if they will hit your home. This is especially true if you live in an area known for specific issues, such as floods or tornadoes. If you live in an area prone to these disasters, you will want to take extra care when getting a policy.
Make sure that anything that could be caused by those disasters is covered. Always check the list of exclusions the insurance company is trying to put into place. Otherwise, you may have a huge surprise when trying to file a claim.
What Does Home Insurance Cover?
Now that you know why you need home insurance, you are probably wondering what it covers. You should be familiar with auto and health insurance, so you understand how the process works. Still, each type of policy has its own benefits, including home insurance. Let’s look at what a basic policy covers, but keep in mind that you can add more to the procedure if you want to increase premium costs.
● Building Coverage – Depending on your policy specifics, it will cover any damage to your home due to natural disasters, internal problems such as plumbing or fire, and vandalism. Any detached buildings, such as a barn, would also be covered under the contract. It cannot be stressed enough that you make sure everything is covered that may come up. If you live in a tornado alley, make sure you have a policy covering damage, or even an entire rebuild, due to a twister crashing through your house.
● Personal Property Coverage – It should also cover any property damage to your material objects. This section of your policy will cover your basic items and some collectables, but high-valued things need to have their own separate policy.
● Personal Liability Insurance – This cannot be stressed enough. It will cover your financial responsibilities if anyone other than you gets injured on your property, regardless of the reason. Even if your property is fenced off and posted, a travelling salesperson could show up and slip and fall on your sidewalk. If you do not have home insurance coverage, you could pay a substantial amount of cash out of your pocket for their medical bills and pain and suffering if they sue you for damages. Always have a good policy that pays a high amount for personal liabilities.
● Living Expenses – Some policies will have this option attached to them. It will cover the expenses that you will have if you are no longer able to live in your house. Either due to the damage being done or imminent harm on the way.
An online comparison portal is the best place to compare home and contents insurance. The platform will do all the work for you. All you do is punch in some numbers online, and they will match you to some of their partners willing to work with you. You will want to go through all the offers and read through every line, even the small print.
Grab a magnifying glass if you need to because you do not want any surprises if you need to file a claim. You will not only want to compare the premium prices but the details of the policy. The cheapest offer may not always be the best offer.
Know What Your Policy Covers
It has been stated several times that you need to make sure that you read the entire offer or contract. Some exclusions will be added to the policy that you will want to know about. Plus, some things have been added that you do not need but are paying for. If you have any questions, contact a specialist who can answer them. If your insurance carrier does not have any customer service, you will want to find a better company that does.
Look Into Your Future
When you get a home and contents insurance policy, you will want to look ahead into your future. Your insurance should not only cover you and your circumstances at the moment, but it should also cover things that could come up later. An example will be if you are planning on building an addition out the back as an extra bedroom. You would want the policy to include replacing or repairing it if you have to file a claim.
Final Thoughts On Home Insurance Specifics
Paying the premiums on a good home and contents insurance policy may be difficult for you until you file a claim. If that ever happens, you will see how important it is to have. Otherwise, the repair and rebuilding costs will fall on you to cover. The most important thing to remember is to ensure your policy covers what you need.