At Prime Insurance Agency we have one goal in mind - to give you the proper coverage, with the best customer service, at the lowest available premium.
By choosing Prime Insurance Agency, you are choosing an independent insurance advisor who works for you, not the insurance company. We represent the most reputable and prominent companies in the industry, and these relationships translate into great insurance plans as well as direct savings for our customers.
With so many options of carriers available, we are able to focus on your specific home insurance needs and deliver pricing options for your budget.
Each homeowners insurance policy provides a combination of property and liability coverage and covers loss of use resulting from damage. There are several basic types of home insurance policies:
- Homeowners Insurance
- Tenant Occupied Homes / Investment Properties
- Condo Insurance
- Renters Insurance
- Vacant Homes
When shopping for home insurance, there is much more to consider than how much your coverage will cost. You need to buy the right type of policy. You need the proper level of protection, plus special provisions for valuables such as jewelry, your computer equipment and other possessions. You might also need additional coverage for such things as water backup or flooding.
Although not required by law, lending institutions will usually require mortgage customers to purchase homeowners insurance. Don't rely on the coverage levels mandated by your bank or mortgage company. Those levels are designed to protect the house itself for just the loan amount, but not necessarily the full value of your home and possessions. That's why it's important to check with your agent or insurance company, to make sure you have adequate coverage.
A Homeowners Policy will protect the following five areas:
- Coverage A- Your Home, the actual structure of the building
- Coverage B- Detached Structures, such as a garage or shed.
- Coverage C- Personal Belongings, including furniture, clothing, appliances and much more.
- Coverage D- Loss of Use, for living expenses like rentals or hotel bills, when the home is damaged and uninhabitable.
- Coverage E- Personal Liability, protects you and your family against a claim or lawsuit if someone is injured or their property is damaged while at your home.
You can save money on homeowners insurance if you know how. Discounts from your insurance company are available for a variety of reasons, ranging from the type of building material used to build your home to how close you live to a fire station. Here are 12 ways you can save money on your homeowners policy:
Raise your deductible.
The deductible is the amount of money you have to pay toward a loss before your insurance kicks in. Typically, deductibles start at $250. Increase your deductible to:
- $500 and save up to 12% on your premiums.
- $1,000 and save up to 24%.
- $2,500 and save up to 30%.
- $5,000 and save up to 37%.
Just make sure you can afford to pay the higher deductible if something should happen.
Buy your home and auto policies from the same company.
Many companies will give a discount if you buy both homeowners and auto coverage from them.
Consider insurance consequences when buying a home.
If you're looking at buying a home, think about the cost of insuring the home. A newer home's electrical, heating and plumbing systems, and overall structure are likely to be in better condition than those of an older home. This can lead to a discount on your premiums.
Also consider the construction of the home and your geographical location. If you live on the East Coast, you'll want the house to be able to stand up to wind damage; on the West Coast, you need to keep earthquakes in mind.
Insure your home, not the land.
Although your home and its contents are at risk from fire, theft, windstorms and other perils, the land your house sits on is not. Don't include the value of the land in deciding how much homeowners insurance you need to buy.
Improve security and safety.
Items such as deadbolt locks, burglar alarms and smoke detectors often bring discounts of 5% each, depending on the company. Your insurance company may also offer a significant discount of 15% or 20% if you install a sophisticated home-security system. If you're thinking about buying such a system, check with your insurer to see which systems they recommend and which will earn you a discount.
Smoking accidents account for more than 23,000 residential fires every year. Some insurers offer to reduce premiums if no one in the home smokes.
Try senior discounts.
Insurance companies have found that retired people stay at home more and spot fires sooner than working people. Older people also have more time for maintaining their homes. If you're at least 55 years old and retired, you might qualify for a discount of as much as 10%.
Ask about group coverage.
Alumni and business associations often work out insurance deals with an insurance company, which includes a discount for association members. Ask your association's director about any such deals.
Stay with an insurer.
If you've kept your coverage with a company for several years, you may receive special consideration. Several insurers will reduce their premiums by 5% after you've been with them for three to five years, and some companies will discount you as much as 10% after six years.
Check your policy annually.
You want your policy to reflect the value of your home and belongings. If you review your policy every year, you will be able to make the necessary adjustments. If, for example, you just sold a valuable painting, you won't need the same amount of coverage. But if you added a garage, you'll need to increase your coverage.
Look for private insurance first.
If you live in a high-risk area (one that is especially vulnerable to coastal storms, fires or crime) and think you'll be forced to buy homeowners coverage from your state's high-risk insurance pool, check first with an insurance agent. You may find that you can still buy insurance at a lower price in the private insurance market than from the insurer of last resort.
Make payments electronically.
Many companies now charge up to $5 for mailed payments, so have your payments automatically deducted to shave that cost. Sometimes the deductions can come from your credit card, so you don't have to worry if the money is in your bank account when payment time comes.
Check your credit rating.
Many companies check your credit and base your policy on the information they find. Make sure your credit is in good shape, and if it's not, seek out companies that do not run credit checks.
Get replacement-cost coverage.
Actual-cash-value coverage reimburses you for the cost of your property at the time of the claim, minus the depreciation. This can result in a lower claim payout than you expect. If your TV is worth $50, for example, that's all you'd get to buy a new one. Replacement-cost coverage will reimburse the full value of an item based on the cost of purchasing a new one. The upfront cost is greater, but you are more likely to receive accurate compensation for your possessions.