|The best way to save on homeowners insurance is to protect your home against typical perils. By preventing losses and claims against your policy, you can help to keep the cost of insurance down. These include:
1.) Keep fire extinguishers in fire-prone areas such as the kitchen, laundry and garage.
2.) Replace old, faulty wiring and make sure to tell your insurer.
3.) Regularly check your roof, down spouts and water pipes for clogs or leaks.
4.) Discourage crime by using exterior lights at night, installing deadbolt locks on all doors, and using timers on inside lamps and lights.
5.) Keep your property safe. Repair loose railings, steps or walkways. You may want to consider adding storm shutters.
6.) Ask about available discounts. Some companies provide homeowners discounts for newly constructed homes, since they’re built to updated building codes and electrical standards. Most companies offer discounts for homes that include a monitored security system, but be sure to ask how much you’d save on your insurance before going to any great expense in security system installation. If you’ve had your home insured with the same company or agency for several years and have been claim-free, you may also be eligible for an additional premium discount. Ask your agent or company representative for tips to help reduce your risks.
7.) Raise your deductibles. By raising your policy’s deductible, you’re responsible for smaller losses, not your insurer, thus lowering your premium and chances for frequent claims.
8.) Review your policy annually. Before tucking away your policy renewal, make sure the information is correct and up to date. For instance, brick or masonry is less expensive to insure than a frame structured home (except for earthquake insurance). Double-check the information regarding how far your home is from a water source such as a fire hydrant or a retention pond, as well as the location of the nearest fire station. If you’ve insured an item separately and it’s depreciated, reduce the floater amount and pocket the difference.
9.) Don’t over-insure. Your land is included in your home’s market value, so don’t include it when deciding how much insurance to buy. If you do, you’ll wind up paying higher premiums.
10.) Avoid frivolous claims. Submitting a claim after years of paying premiums is justifiable, but frequent claims may mark you as a high risk.
11.) Cover your home office. Don’t assume automatic coverage. Premiums can run as little as an extra $20 and can protect business risks.
12.) Keep your garage doors closed, even when you’re home.
Source: Arizona Insurance Council