Everyone who owns a home needs to have homeowners insurance. The financial costs of not having it are astronomical if something happens, so you cannot afford not to have it. But as with other types of insurance, you should periodically shop around to ensure you’re getting the best deal. The following are some factors that determine how often you should shop for home insurance.
When Your Current Policy Is Up for Renewal
Like other types of insurance, homeowners insurance coverage is usually for a year at time. For this reason, the end of each year is a good time to reevaluate your policy to determine if it’s still meeting your needs and whether you can get a better deal elsewhere. Focus on having insurance that offers the coverage levels you actually need over insurance that comes at a cheaper price, but you can often shop around and find similar levels of coverage for less.
When There’s a Change to Your Home
You’re obligated to inform your homeowners insurance company when there’s been a change to your home that could affect your rate and coverage. For example, you might have adopted a dog that could be a liability and increase your rates, or you might have built an addition to the house that increases its value. When these changes occur, talk to your homeowners insurance company to determine if your rates will be affected. If they will, you can begin shopping elsewhere if you wish.
When You Haven’t Shopped in a Long Time
If you’ve owned your home for a long time, your homeowners insurance company may have raised your rates steadily over the years to the point where you’re paying more for it than you need to. If you’ve had the policy for several years without filing any claims, your insurance company might be willing to lower the rate based on customer loyalty and perception of lower risk. Either way, it’s worth it to reassess your policy after a few years of owning the home to make sure the amount you’re paying for your coverage is still reasonable.
You Paid Off Your Mortgage
When you’re applying for a mortgage to buy a home, your lender will typically require you to carry a certain level of home insurance coverage. Once that mortgage is paid off, you’ll have more flexibility to choose another plan or company that might better meet your needs. Just make sure to maintain adequate coverage levels for your own protection. Avoid cutting down on coverage that’s advantageous simply to save some money every month. On the other hand, your financial situation may be good enough that you can go with lower levels of coverage in some areas. It’s up to you.
Following the tips above can help you save money on your insurance costs and ensure you have the right coverage for your needs. For reliable, affordable home insurance, San Diego homeowners know they can trust Altra Insurance Services. We also provide renters, commercial, motorcycle, and auto insurance. Request a free quote by calling one of our friendly agents today at 619-474-6666.