It’s nice to share big news with someone. However, if that “someone” happens to be your insurance company, whether or not you share depends on what you have in mind. This certainly applies to home renovations. The short answer is yes, there are benefits to letting your insurance company know, especially if we’re talking about your homeowners policy.
Get Your Insurance Company Involved Early
It’s a good idea to let your homeowners insurance company know about your home renovation plans sooner rather than later. The main reason is because of unexpected costs that could be involved with your renovation. Also, there’s always the possibility something could go wrong during your improvement project, such as a broken pipe or faulty wall removal. If you wait until the unexpected happens to file a claim, you could have some issues with getting it accepted.
Prepare for the Possibility of a Rate Increase
In some instances, a home renovation, especially one that’s more involved, could equal higher premiums. This is more likely to happen if you add square footage to your home, as may be the case if you expand your living room or add a room. Whether or not renovations raise your premiums depends on how much value is added to your home.
By getting your insurance company involved during the planning stages, you can decide if, for example, you really want to add those more expensive curtains and lighting fixtures to your home or you want to be more practical. Besides, you can always add more bells and whistles later on so you’re not adding too much value to your home at once.
Inform the Insurance Company because It Might Lower Your Premiums
One other reason to tell your insurance company about your renovation plans is because of the possibility of lowering your monthly payments. As mentioned above, the extent to which this could happen depends on the type of renovations you’ll be making. Typically, insurance companies providing home insurance tend to appreciate the following improvements most:
• Upgrading to a tankless water heater from a conventional one
• Electrical and plumbing updates
• Roof-related updates
• Solar panels and similar additions that can save you money over time
• Insulation updates
• Appealing extras like a sump pump backed up by a battery or a generator
Don’t Hide Your Renovations
If you have concerns about higher premiums based on what you have planned, it may be tempting to just proceed with your improvements and not let your insurance company know about your plans. However, doing so comes with certain risks. The main one is finding yourself underinsured if something unexpected happens after you’ve made your improvements. You could end up having to absorb more of the repair costs yourself. This can be especially burdensome if your newly improved home is severely damaged by a storm, flood, or fire.
Make sure to check with your insurance agent so you know exactly what’s covered during and after your home renovation. If you need reliable, affordable homeowners insurance, call on the experienced, trustworthy professionals at Altra Insurance Services. We can also provide you with renters, business, and car insurance. San Diego homeowners can learn more about our high-quality personal service by calling us today at (619) 404-6311.