Do I need homeowners insurance?
Unlike auto insurance, homeowners coverage is not mandated. But if you're among the overwhelming majority of homeowners who finance their digs, you're mortgage lender likely requires you to have protection of some sort to assure their investment is guarded. And most homeowners opt to continue coverage even after they've paid off the house.
Where can I find the cheapest homeowners insurance available?
Homeowners policies may not be as exorbitantly priced as you think. Get a fast, free quote right now to get a good gauge of policy rates you might be looking at.
It's important to note, however, that you ultimately get what you pay for, and "cheaply priced" insurance may have pitfalls in protection. For instance, the less coverage you pay for, the more accidents you're woefully exposed to. It's therefore important to find an insurance company that doesn't sacrifice quality for quantity, but lowers costs through innovative technology and a streamlined insurance process — not an insurer that cuts corners.
How much coverage do I need for my home?
To begin setting an adequate amount of coverage, it's important that you know the value of your home and belongings. An effective way to determine the value of your home is to estimate the cost of rebuilding it from the ground up. Also, think about any unattached structures on your property (sheds, gazebos, unattached garages) that might necessitate looking beyond coverage limits.
Remember, things change over time — from kids growing up and moving out, to upgrading the kitchen and bathroom — so the right amount of homeowners coverage can change too. That's why it's good measure to assess your coverage needs regularly by consulting your insurer.
How much does homeowners insurance cost?
Homeowners insurance rates vary widely, from around $300 to $1,000 a year. When it comes down to it, though, there's no be-all and end-all number that can be applied to every circumstance, as no two are the same. But, by understanding the variables in your unique situation, your insurer can better tailor a policy more suited to you and your home. Some of the factors that help insurance companies determine the cost of your homeowners premium include:
- The location and age of the house
- How much coverage you select
- The rebuilding cost of your home
- The total value of your personal belongings
- Your chosen deductibles (how much you pay out of pocket)
- Your claim history
There are also a bevy of other factors that influence how much you'll pay for homeowners insurance, including swimming pools or trampolines, owning a dog, and the safety features you have in place.