Home Insurance: Is It Worth It?
If you own a home, then likely you have homeowners insurance on your biggest and most expensive asset. True, if you own your home outright, then there is no law requiring you to have homeowners insurance. Only mortgage companies will insist on insurance if they have a lien on your home. Is it wise to go without insurance? Should you? Keep reading and we shall look at the value of having or getting rid of your homeowners insurance.
Homeowners’ insurance rates are spiking especially for homeowners in areas where hurricane damage has been high, such as Florida. Some homeowners are finding their rates have doubled or tripled in just one year while others are learning that their policy has been cancelled by the insurance company meaning they must shop for new insurance.
The temptation to drop insurance altogether is a big one, but a dangerous choice to make unless you have a bundle of money to absorb the loss.Home insurance makes sense for the following reason:–If there is a catastrophic loss, then your home can be completely replaced. Just make certain that your policy has been updated to reflect the current replacement cost of your home. If you live in earthquake or a flood prone area, you will need to purchase separate insurance to cover these disasters.
You can save money on your policy via:–Comparison shopping. All insurers are different and rates can vary by as much a 10 to 20 percent. Shop around and don’t just go with the best rate. Companies that pay a fast claim are worth more than a slower payer any day, even if there rates are high.You are your home’s best advocate because:–You know your home. You are in the best position to determine loss, therefore you must be aware of what is allowed or not allowed before filing for a claim.
A tree that falls on your home means that you are covered, while floods and earthquakes are only covered through the writing of a separate policy. Yes, insurance on your home can certainly seem expensive and almost worth dropping until you need to use it. Your insurance company isn’t always your best friend, but they can be your only friend when disaster hits and able to help restore you financially if you selected the policy with the best coverage.
Home Insurance Coverage - How To Get Affordable Home Owner Insurance
Working from home is not a new idea. People have been working from home for years doing a wide array of odd jobs. Some people sold magazine subscriptions over the telephone. Some people stuffed envelopes for companies. These days, however, working from home carries a certain clout that it didnt carry years ago; thats because people arent just working from home anymore. People are running home businesses. Since technology is so advanced in the 21st century, people who run home businesses have come to rely heavily on computers and other electronic gadgets in order to communicate with clients, as well as both create and deliver the products. Some people base their home businesses on freelance writing, in which they can use their computers writing software programs to write, and even send the finished product to the client using email. Others base their home businesses on graphic design, which the do completely on the computer using graphic design software, and can, once again, send the finished product to the client using email. This is easy, and inexpensive, because no paper is required and email is free. When people work for someone else, the boss usually handles business management. However, just because people own home businesses doesnt mean they dont have to practice good business management. One of the best business management steps is making sure your equipment the very tools that make it possible for you to work is covered by insurance. Some homeowners insurance policies cover your home business equipment, and some dont. If yours does, find out how much coverage you have and whether you should purchase more. If yours doesnt, consider purchasing insurance coverage. When you make the home business management step of purchasing insurance for your home business equipment, remember: your computer isnt the only tool you use. Take into account all accessories pertinent to your home business, including digital cameras, printers, scanners, fax machines, and copiers.
The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors warns that if you can't get insurance for your house, you're in big trouble. Mortgage lenders won't lend on houses that are uninsurable and as a result its value could fall by up to 80%. It's a high flood risk that's most likely to make your house uninsurable. According to a recent survey, 6.5 million homes are already at risk from flooding of which 1.5 million are in high risk areas. The government has completed flood defences in many such areas and protection for a further 80,000 homes is due this year. But concerns have also been expressed about a further 120,000 new homes planned for the Thames Gateway which are potentially in a high at risk zone. Yet many areas remain vulnerable. And if global warming continues, by 2030, the 1.5 million at risk could mushroom 3.5 million. Back in 2003 the Association of British Insurers (ABI) agreed the principles which committed UK insurers to offering home and contents insurance for properties in areas which are assessed to be at a flooding risk once in seventy five years or more. The rider was that the flood defences had to be already in place or would be completed by the end of 2007. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has the responsibility of developing and maintaining these flood defences but within the insurance industry there's widespread concern that insufficient progress is being made. As a result the insurers have has warned the government that there could be widespread withdrawal of insurance cover if progress is stepped up. In the mean time, those in areas threatened by flood water could find their insurance premiums soaring. Whilst the insurance industry agreed to provide insurance cover, their commitment was simply to maintain premiums at reasonable levels. But there was no definition of what reasonable means. As a result premium increases of 60% have been common with up 400% increases in bad areas. In a tiny number of cases, cover has been withdrawn altogether, mostly in country areas where DEFRA considers the cost of defending a cluster of a few homes to be uneconomic. Environmentalists warn that unless DEFRA gets it's skates on, the UK 's current bill for flood damage could rise from £950 million a year, to £3.2 billion. After all, the average insurance claim for household flood damage is £30,000 that's even higher than fire damage. And localised events like the 2004 flood at Boscastle, Cornwall , can cost the insurers over £15 million. If you are in any doubt whether your home or proposed home, is in a flood risk area, you should visit www.environment-agency.gov.uk. This is DEFRA's web site where you can check whether they think your home is at risk of flooding. Their maps were originally designed for planning purposes and provide information on a post-code basis. Whilst many insurers use the DEFRA information, others like More Than, have their own flood maps. These assess homes individually rather than post code areas. This means that if your existing insurer increases your premium for flood risk and uses the DEFRA information, you may still be able to get a cheaper rate from an insurer using it's own flood data if its data identifies that your property is beyond the at risk zone. The ABI has recently added to the pressure on DEFRA to accelerate the building and upgrading of flood defences. It has warned that unless the government increases its spending on flood defences, the insurance industry may not continue their commitment to the 2003 principles. That would be bad news for many homeowners.