written by: P Reddy•edited by: Elizabeth Wistrom•updated: 6/28/2011
An exploration of the ways to lower home insurance by making small changes around your home. These simple tips and tricks will help keep your home safe and secure while lowering your insurance premium for the year.
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Ways to Lower Homeowners Insurance
Finding ways to lower homeowners insurance is a rewarding endeavor. By discovering what work lowers rates, what additions make a home safer, and how to work with insurance companies to get the best rate, homeowners can enjoy lower insurance rates.
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Removing Safety Hazards
Safety hazards in a house are red flags to insurance companies, and updating or eliminating safety hazards is an easy way to considerably lower the cost of homeowners insurance. Alarm systems, such as the security systems that call for help when an unauthorized person enters the home, can save a lot of money on home insurance.
Other home amenities, such as fencing, have a similar effect on an insurance rate. Having a pool or hot tub typically increases homeowners insurance costs, but some homeowners would prefer to keep their pool or hot tub in exchange for higher rates. Installing safety measures, such as fencing around a pool, can help minimize the increase in home insurance.
Certain breeds of dogs can increase a homeowners insurance—therefore, before adopting a pet, it’s wise for homeowners to check their policy and ensure that they are picking a dog that will not hurt their home insurance cost.
Ensuring that all stairs in the home have handrails is another way of lowering home insurance costs. Open stairways are very dangerous, and simply putting up handrails can make a big difference in homeowners insurance rates.
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Protecting the Home Against Natural Disasters
Some houses are located in areas that put them at elevated risk for natural disasters. Taking steps to protect against these natural disasters is an important way to minimize the cost of homeowners insurance. Purchasing separate fire insurance protects homes more completely than a standard homeowners insurance policy, and showing the insurance company that the home is protected by a fire insurance policy can lower rates.
Installing storm shutters, updating electrical systems, and ensuring that the roof is strong against the elements are all ways of keeping a home safe from disasters. When work like this is being done, it’s important to document what’s been done so that the insurance company has proof of the updates.
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Working With the Insurance Company
Typically, loyalty is rewarded when it comes to insurance. Homeowners that stay with one company for a long time or that insure their car through the same company may find their homeowners insurance rates are far lower than what they would be at a different company. Insurance companies can also help with other ways of lowering rates, such as increasing the deductible or finding company-specific discounts.