You have found the perfect house. Have you considered that there may be some things in that perfect house that may cost you more in home insurance or mean it’s harder to insure your new home? Read on to know what to look for as you investigate new possible homes. These are my top 7 tips as you buy a new home and secure homeowners insurance. These are great tips for all home buyers but especially for first-time home buyers. These will also help you determine how much to insure your new home for, read on for my top tips for new home buyers.
- Make sure you are properly insuring the value of your home. There is a difference between the market value of a home and the replacement cost. The market value is the price that you are purchasing it for. The replacement cost is the cost to rebuild your home, using factors like labor and material, in the event of a loss. These can be two very different numbers. Make sure the insurance policy includes the replacement cost of the home to be properly insured. Some policies include a replacement cost extension which would provide additional coverage if needed. Since replacement costs are estimates, this can be a very important add-on.
- Be sure to know what kind of electrical wiring is in the new home. Some electrical wiring is not acceptable to insurance companies. Especially in older homes. Fuses and knob and tube wiring are usually not acceptable. Aluminum wiring is frowned upon unless updated. Circuit breakers with a minimum 100 amp service are preferred. Check with your agent to see what is acceptable.
- Know how your home is heated. If the home has oil heat, a buried-in-the-ground oil tank is mostly unacceptable. Above-ground tanks are preferred.
- Be sure you know the safety rules for pools and trampolines. Swimming pools will need the proper fencing around them to be acceptable. Self-latching gates for above-ground pools are preferred. If your new pool does not have an appropriate fence, one may need to be installed before it can be insured. Some companies do not allow trampolines. Some do with the proper netting. Check with your agent first.
- Know the age of your new home’s roof. Roofs older than 20 years can be an issue for some companies. Flat roofs will need a pre-inspection before the insurance policy will be issued. An inspection on an older roof may be necessary before being approved by the underwriter.
- Be sure to tell your agent about additional heating sources. Supplemental heating sources like a wood stove or pellet stove need to be disclosed. These are usually acceptable if installed properly and cleaned on an annual basis.
- Consider your dog. Did you know you could be denied home insurance if you own a specific breed? Yep, some breeds are not eligible and the insurance cannot be written through some companies if these breeds are located in the home. Check with your agent to see what is and what is not acceptable.
These are just some of the things to look for in your new home. If you have any questions, always call your agent for guidance.
Insuring one of your valuable assets, if not the most valuable asset, is quite an important undertaking.
In CT, the Jim Eagan Agency can help. We offer the home insurance coverage you need to make sure your home is protected. Whether it is a traditional, single-family home or a multi-family home, we will find the right policy for you. We also provide coverage for tenants, condo owners, and rental properties.
Call us today for a second opinion on your current home policy coverage or get a quote for a new home you are purchasing.
Everyone’s house is unique. No two are exactly the same. You need to tailor your coverages specifically to your home. We can help you with that.