Why Review Your Personal Insurance?
Most Homeowners insurance companies will send out a reminder for a renewal of your home insurance policy when the end of the year is up for your insurance coverage. Many will also automatically renew your policy unless you call and let them know that you want to change or cancel that policy. This makes it easy for many homeowners to begin sending in the next set of payments for another year without reviewing the policy to make sure it adequately reflects their needs for the year.
Whether you have upgraded or remodeled the home, added a deck onto the back, turned the home into a rental property or realized that you might have problems with flooding in your area, there are several reasons to review your home insurance policy every year to assess whether the coverage still meets your needs.
Even if you have just bought a home insurance coverage policy, it is essential to review the policy as soon as you receive it to make sure the coverage has the correct limits amounts and coverage needs you have asked for. Remember that this policy will be in place for an entire year and will most likely cost between $300-$2000 so be sure that you are getting what you want.
If you asked for personal liability of others in the amount of $100,000 and the policy only shows $50,000 don’t be afraid to call the insurance agent back to have this problem corrected. The problem can simply be solved by issuing a new policy or a policy change.
Once the year time period has expired on your current policy and you are getting ready to renew again, it is always a safe bet to call the insurance agent and ask if the replacement cost value has gone up on your home or on anything in your home.
Remember that the financial market continues to increase, and with these rates of building and replacement tools will go up, so there is no shame in calling to ask if the figures on your policy need to be changed.
If you have done any renovation of the home in the last year, such as replacing countertops or flooring or even added on a deck, it is important to inform the insurance company of these changes. This protects you from being underinsured in case of damage or loss.
If you have acquired any major purchases of personal property, it is also important to contact the insurance company about changing the coverage amount on your interior belongings. This could include major electronics equipment like a television, a personal computer or laptop, an expensive piece of jewelry or fur coat, or even new furniture or a new piece of artwork.
It is also important to review your insurance coverage policy every year to determine if you have adequate coverage and liability insurance. Although some basic policies cover certain types of natural disasters and others cover personal liability, you may want to consider adding on specific insurance clauses for flooding, earthquakes, or wind if you live in a high-risk area.
There are many things that might cause injury to third parties. This could include injury to construction workers who are remodeling a kitchen or bathroom or even a babysitter or housekeeper. You will also want to change your policy if your children are starting to get older and invite over friends to play in the yard or to spend the night. Personal liability insurance will cover any accidents that happen while others are in your home.
One final reason to review your insurance policy each year is to assess discounts or possible price quote deductions that you may be able to receive. When you purchased the home, it may not have had a security system installed, fire sprinklers, or been equipped with up to date smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
But if you have installed this equipment over the past year, it is a good idea to call and inform the insurance company to see if this makes you eligible for a discount. You may also be able to receive a discount if you started receiving car insurance from the same company, turned a certain age, or began a membership to a particular club or organization that the insurance company recognizes and gives discounts to regularly.
This information is intended for the client, individual or entity to which it is addressed. These articles contain concepts and opinions, and are not intended to represent the consensus of the insurance or risk community, nor to provide professional legal or tax advice. Please seek professional legal or tax counsel before making any decisions. The information provided does not change or modify any insurance policy, only the actual terms of the in-force policies will govern claim settlements.