How to save money on home insurance

Real estate insurance concept

Nobody likes paying for home insurance. It seems like just another bill every month that means you have less money to spend on something else. However, people who have had a break in or a fire and promptly received a cheque in the mail are very relieved they kept up their payments.

But that doesn’t mean you have to overpay to get adequate coverage. Recently the website insureye.com published a list of ways to reduce your home insurance rates, some of which were new to me. Here are some of my favourites:

  1. Bundling: You will save money if you have your home and car insurance with the same carrier.
  2. Annual vs. monthly: If you pay the whole bill once a year you will pay less because processing a single payment saves insurers administration costs.
  3. Group policies: Alumni from some universities, professional associations, employers and unions may offer members of the group discounted policies. My husband is a professional engineer and we have had group coverage with TD Meloche Monnex since we bought our first home 38 years ago.
  4. Credit score: Your good credit can score you a lower premium. This is because most companies use your credit score when calculating your insurance.
  5. Contents insurance: Check to see if the standard insurance for contents is too high or too low. If all you own is a laptop and IKEA furniture you don’t need to insure your belongings up to $250,000.
  6. Deductible: If you raise your deductible, your insurance premiums will go down.
  7. Heating: Insurers like forced-air or gas furnaces. Keep this in mind when you are house-hunting. Insuring an oil-heated house may be more expensive.
  8. Safe neighbourhood: Some neighbourhoods are viewed as less safe than others and therefore home insurance premiums are higher. Check before you buy.
  9. Discounts: You may qualify for a whole range of discounts offered by some insurance companies. For example:
  • Claims-free discount
  • Fire alarm discount
  • Increased deductible discount
  • Intrusion alarm discount
  • Loyalty discount
  • Mortgage-free discount
  • New home discount
  • Senior citizen discount
  • 24-hour Video Surveillance insurance discount in an apartment or condo building
  • Non-smoker discount
  • Welcome discount
  • Loyalty discount
  • Stability discount (If you’ve been living at the same location for years.)

 

Perhaps the most important thing is to review your coverage annually to ensure you are neither over-insured or under-insured and that you have been credited with all the potential discounts you may be eligible for. Insurance companies want to keep your business, and if you get a lower quote from another carrier, your current insurer may be able to offer you a more cost-effective arrangement.

 

 

 

 

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