Chances are you’ll never be able to read everything you’d like to this year. However, here’s one thing to read that may make a big difference to you? Your homeowners insurance policy. Here’s the truth: your homeowners insurance policy is a long, boring read. In fact, I’m sure you could list at least five things you’d rather spend an hour doing. That being said, it’s very important to stay in the loop on your homeowners insurance. You’ll never really need it unless disaster strikes–and that’s precisely the time many homeowners find out too late that their policy is missing something crucial.
A good rule of thumb is to review your homeowners insurance policy annually. This can be done on your own time or with your trusted insurance agent. This is because according to an IIABA Survey, at least 32 million U.S. households had ill-fitting insurance policies. These poor policies are due to a number of factors including being over insured and having gaping holes in your coverage. Unless you’re giving your homeowners policy the timely review it deserves, you might not be covered in the way you should be. Here are a few policy addendums that you may not have, but you might find yourself in need of:
- Flooding insurance (Flood plains may change from year to year)
- Hurricane or tropical storm insurance
- Earthquake or tornados
- Dog bites
- Swimming pools
Likewise, you may find yourself the owner of a home insurance policy that covers things you’d never have to worry about. Additionally, the amount of coverage you’re paying for something could be far too high. A good insurance agent will sit down with you to explain your policy. Additionally, they will go through why amounts in your coverage are set the way they are. However, at the end of the day, know that it is your policy. If you sense you’re being up-sold or being made to take on a policy provision you don’t need, take a pause. Research typical policy addendums in your state and talk to other insurance agencies. It’s perfectly okay to switch policies if you’re unhappy with your current insurance agency, or if you can get a better deal for similar coverage.
An excellent time to review your homeowners insurance policy is around renewal time. Most policies renew automatically on an annual basis. You should be able to locate your policy renewal date either on your printed policy or in your online account dashboard. If you’re considering switching insurance companies, talk to your friends, family, and neighbors about who they’ve obtained coverage through. They will be your best resource for finding an agency that suits your needs. Be sure to visit online review sites for more information. Finally, don’t be afraid to interview several insurance agencies. Finding the right fit takes time, but it’s worth it should disaster strike.