The first rule of shopping for homeowner’s insurance is that plenty of effort and research will pay off. Once you’ve found your dream home, you want to make sure you can manage to balance your mortgage and premiums. Learn all about the discounts available from various insurers, and strategically do a cost/benefit analysis to determine which company you can manage to get the lowest rate from.

Here are a few tips that will keep the cost of your homeowners insurance premium low:

  • Raise your deductible. The deductible is a flat amount you pay for the insurance company to reimburse on a claim. If you raise this amount it will drop your premium, albeit when a disaster occurs you will have to pay more. For example, a $500 deductible increased to $1,000 can save you 25% on your premium.
  • Purchase from the same company as your auto insurance. If you buy more than one type of insurance from certain companies, you can reduce your premiums by 5-15%.
  • Install burglar alarms, smoke detectors, and dead bolts to bolster your security protection. Companies may offer a lower rate if you have these systems installed.
  • Consider insurance rates when you choose a house and location. Homes close to fire hydrants or with more updated plumbing are likely to have reduced rates. Furthermore, the local natural disaster risk will be considered, so make sure your home can appropriately withstand risks common to the area.
  • Learn what factors are considered risk factors to each company. Owning certain dogs, having a smoker in the house, or even owning a trampoline are all possible risk factors that may lead insurance companies to raise the premium. Read the fine print of the policy and make sure you aren’t falling into one of these categories.
  • Choose a disaster-resistant home. Depending on your area, your home should be suitable to withstand natural storms. If you are buying in California, a wood-framed home that can stand up to an earthquake is ideal. These homes will automatically enjoy lower rates. To further ensure your home’s protection, install additional protection such as reinforced roofing and storm shutters.
  • Compare rates amongst companies. This is always important advice when shopping for insurance, as rates can vary immensely. You want to make sure you get the best deal possible for your situation
  • Stick with the same company, and check your policy annually. Longtime customers may receive discounts of 10% or more. Just remember to review your policy every year to ensure that it aligns with the current state of your property and belongings.

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