How to Compare Homeowners Insurance Rates and Save Tips

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Do insurance companies ever offer incentive-based savings?

Incentive Savings

Some homeowners insurance providers will give you incentives that can help you save money. For example, insurance rates are generally lower if you own your home outright rather than still paying off a mortgage. So you might be in line for a rate reduction if you completely pay off your mortgage.

Obviously this is not something most people can do in a year or two, but when the time comes that you do pay off your mortgage you could reap some insurance rewards. When you are comparing home insurance rates and looking for opportunities for savings now and in the future, you might want to factor things like this and other incentives offered into your decision.

Long periods of early or on time payments is another area you might see rewards from. So always be on the lookout for these opportunities. You should also ask about incentive-based savings every time you update your plan or request quotes.

   
Do you follow what is happening in the insurance industry?

Staying on Top of Insurance News

Why do we watch the news on television or read the newspaper every day? To keep up with what is happening in the world around us. To know how the changing world affects us and others. To see the one millionth reality show to hit the air.

Well keeping up with insurance industry news is important for many of the same reasons. If you know what is happening you can see how it will affect you. Are there opportunities for you to save money that maybe weren't there a year ago? Are rates drastically lowering next year? Maybe they are going to go up and you want to renew your coverage before that happens.

Just like the news changes everyday, the wheels of the insurance industry never stop spinning. Keep up with what is happening through your state Department of Insurance and the Insurance Information Institute. You'll know when to check quotes and compare home insurance rates to get the most savings and the best coverage options.

   
Can you take the more expensive of 2 plans and still save?

Spending More To Save More

So you've compared the rates of two different policies and one is clearly cheaper than the other. So that's the one you should go with, right? But wait, there's more to it than that. Money is not the only consideration when you compare home insurance.

Sure, you want to save money. Sites like QuoteScout.com want you to do the same. However, sometimes the more expensive plan is the right one for you. It may provide better coverage. It may be with a company that is more financially stable. Or maybe future discounts you would become eligible for would make it cheaper in the long run than the one that is less expensive right off the bat.

These are all things that need to be taken into account when making comparisons and trying to save, because savings should not have to come at the expense of quality service, protection and possibilities for the future. Choosing a slightly more expensive plan that offers better coverage will bring more than one type of savings in the future.

   
Have you read the fine print?

Read The Fine Print

So how do you choose between two home insurance policies that both have the same rate? It's like the saying goes, read the fine print. If the rates are the same, or at least comparable, look for something that sets them apart. You can usually find something if you look hard enough.

Maybe there is something one plan offers that you overlooked. It might not be anything earth shattering. But maybe it is a nice little perk or caveat that can nudge you in one direction. If the rates are comparable, and you find no attractive little jewels in the fine print of either policy, then spend a little more time talking to the companies.

See which one you get a better feeling from. Maybe one seems more customer service oriented than the other. Maybe a particular regulation or requirement is not as convenient for you as another. When you compare home insurance rates and try to save money, it may be an easy comparison or it may come down to those factors that cannot be quantified with numbers.

   
Have you thought about not having home insurance?

Economy Vs. Insurance

Tough economic times may make some people consider doing without homeowners insurance in order to save a few dollars. But the truth is it can only make matters worse. If something happens to your home while you have no insurance and times are tough, where does that leave you? Much worse off than if you chose to keep the coverage.

There are other ways to save money though. Take the time to compare home insurance rates from different companies. You may be able to get a better rate than the one you have now from another provider or even the one you currently use.

You might be eligible for discounts that you were not even aware of. All you have to do is ask your insurer or head over to QuoteScout.com to see how much money you can save with different companies.

So before you even consider not having insurance - which only puts you at greater risk - compare some insurance rates and find ways that you can save and still protect your home and possessions at the same time.

   
Have you factored insurance costs into your monthly budget?

Factoring Insurance Into Your Budget

Your monthly insurance premium is one more bill that you have to pay, but it is definitely a necessary one. Make sure that you keep this in mind when you compare home insurance rates. Add up each bill that you have to pay every month, such as:

  • Utilities
  • Phone
  • Mortgage
  • Student loans
Then add any other expenses that you may have.

  • Food
  • Transportation
  • Clothing
  • Prescriptions
Subtract that from your monthly income and see what is left. This will give you a better idea of what you can afford to pay each month.

Once you have your finances in order, you will be better equipped to compare homeowners insurance rates and find one that will save you the most money and be affordable. It is also a good idea to try and keep at least the amount of your deductible in a savings account at all times in case you need it after a claim.

   
Can my credit score affect my insurance rates?

Credit Scores Can Affect Insurance Rates

Not only do you want a good credit score when you apply for a mortgage, but you also need it so you can insure that home at an affordable rate as well. If you spend the time and effort to improve your credit rating it will pay dividends when you are ready to purchase a house and the insurance along with it.

Insurance companies will often factor your credit score into the rate they are willing to give you in a quote. So if you know that you are looking to buy a home in the next year to few years and your credit is not in the best shape it could be, now is the time to start working on this. Especially if you want to get the best homeowners insurance rates possible.

Then it is a matter of keeping your credit in good standing by making payments on time. A good way to do this with no hassle is to enroll in automatic payment plans where the monthly premium for your homeowners insurance is automatically deducted from you checking account at the same time each month. This way you never forget to make the payment yourself.

   
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Carma Spence-Pothitt