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About Home Insurance

What will by home insurance cover?

Obviously, this depends on your individual plan and the company from which you’ve purchased it. There are some standard product categories though.

The product that will help to pay for repairs or rebuilding in the event of damage is called Dwelling Coverage. It can cover plumbing, HVAC systems, electrical systems, etc.

In the event that you are sued by someone who was hurt on your property, either through negligent behaviour or accident, Liability Insurance can help with legal fees and settlements.

If you have more than one structure on your property, such as a garage, outbuilding, or guest house, Other Structures insurance acts as a Liability insurance over these structures and, in some cases, contents.

Personal Property Coverage protects the value of the contents of your home, and can include electronics, furniture, clothing, artworks, tools, and more. It is a good idea to use one of the calculators, checklists, or guidelines provided by your insurance company to make an inventory for later use if you need to make a claim. A video tour of the home often serves this purpose as well. Store the data on the cloud or in some other place not likely to be damaged along with the home.

If you need to move out during home repairs, Loss of Use coverage will help to pay your expenses.

If someone is injured on your property, but they don’t want to sue you, Guest Medical Coverage will pay for medical bills and related expenses. This is usually set around $1000 per person, but varies as per your policy and preferences.

How are my home insurance rates calculated?

The rates you could pay for these services vary a great deal according to many factors. If you live in a more expensive home, in a more expensive area, you can expect to pay more for some features. If you live in an area with a high crime rate, you may pay more for others. Farms inherently have more risk associated with them than apartments, so rates for some products will be higher.

The age of your home will also be taken into account. Older homes are seen to have a greater chance of insurance claims, as systems are older and less advanced. Newer homes are less likely to have problems with major systems.

If you live in an area with current hurricanes or earthquakes, your insurance rates may also be higher, and additional requirements may be necessary, such as hurricane shutters or bookcase mooring devices.

Your personal situation also makes a difference. If you’ve made claims in the past, rates will be higher. If you own a large pet, have a swimming pool, trampoline, etc., you may have higher premiums. Your credit score is also taken into account. It is seen as an indicator as to your level of responsibility and risk aversion. The better your score, the lower your premium will tend to be.

A major factor is the size of your deductible. The deductible is the amount you agree to pay out of pocket before the insurance company picks up their portion. This is meant to prevent small or frivolous claims. The higher the amount you are willing to pay before calling on the insurance company, the lower your rates. Deductibles can be relatively small (around $500), but can be substantially higher if the homeowner is able (and willing) to cover more expensive damage on their own.

Finally, the amount of coverage you want will affect the amount you pay. This will inevitably be limited by the value of the property to be covered, but within that constraint there is a lot of room to raise or lower the amount you have available should you need it.

In all areas of insurance, the final product you pay for – and how much you pay for it – is the result of your situation, the products available, and your particular insurance preferences.

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