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Can I get a discount?

If you’re like most of us, you hate paying full price, even on something as necessary as insurance. Most insurance companies offer discounts if you maintain multiple contracts,

An alarm system may scare away would-be burglars, but it attracts insurance companies.

Insurance companies love home alarm systems, which is great if you’re a homeowner. Innovation in recent years make installing and owning a home alarm system relatively easy and inexpensive. If you do get one, don’t forget to let your agent know. You’ll probably see a nice savings on your annual premiums.

Remember that your home isn’t all your insuring with a homeowner’s policy.

Often, it’s the items in your home that are the hardest to replace. Make an inventory of all your valuable possessions. Keep copies of it somewhere outside of your home like in a safe deposit box. And update your list and your coverage at least annually to make sure you’re properly insured.

Balance your deductible against what you can pay.

Choosing your deductible is a bit of a guessing game. Too low, and your annual premiums look scary. Too high and every potential problem could cost more than it would without going through your insurance. We recommend starting with what you can afford and adjusting at least once every year or two.

Are you a risky bet?

If you’ve ever filed a claim against your homeowner’s insurance, you’re a riskier bet for an insurance company. Don’t worry, you’re supposed to use your insurance, but if you file frequent claims or several for the same issue, you may find your rates going up or have trouble getting a decent rate on your next home.

Buying an older home? Paying for safety upgrades can save you money.

Installing or upgrading smoke alarms, CO2 detectors, smart locks and other safety equipment in an older home could save you money on your annual homeowner’s insurance premiums. So go ahead and buy that fixer upper. As long as it has good bones, you should be covered.

Plan ahead for construction.

Thinking of adding on to your home or putting up an outbuilding? How you build it could cost you money. Sure, wooden frames are the norm because they’re typically cheaper and faster to build but using cement or steel frames might save you in the long run because they’re less flammable and generally hold up to extreme weather conditions better.

Did you know…?

Most homeowners’ policies provide coverage against damage to the interior and exterior of your house, provide personal liability protection for any damage or injuries caused by you or your family, and reimburse policy holders for hotel and/or house rental while your home is being rebuilt or repaired? Take a look at your policy to make sure you’re covered.

You might not be as covered as you think.

As tempting as it might be to skim over the fine print, it’s important to read your homeowner’s policy. Most standard policies protect you in the event of fire, hail or even explosions. But floods and earthquakes and certain other natural disasters aren’t part of a typical policy.