The following are the top 10 ways to save money on your Florida Homeowners Insurance:
1. “Shop” your homeowners insurance. Make sure you are getting the most competitive rate available. There are more companies writing insurance in Florida this year than in the past 6 years. Insurance rates have decreased in the last quarter of 2013 due to lower re-insurance costs.
2. Make sure you are up to date on all of the possible discounts you can receive. Have you put a monitored alarm system in your home? Have you put shutters on your home? Have you installed a new roof? Check with your agent. You may need a new ‘Wind Mitigation’ done, and these improvements could mean significant discounts on your homeowners Insurance!
3. Renovations to your home such as electrical, plumbing, a new roof, a new addition, or new windows will give you more companies offering coverage. Any time you do any upgrades have your agent re-quote your insurance. Remember, you may have to increase your coverage depending on what was done on the home.
Note: if you are planning any renovation or addition to the home contact your agent. You may need a separate builder’s risk policy.
4. You could possibly be over insured. Not only could your home be over insured, the contents in your home could be as well. Make sure you review this with your agent before requesting any changes in limits.
5. Many policies have what is called an “inflation guard”. Annually this will increase your coverage from 1% to 4%. You may be able to have this removed, and your insured value will remain the same.
6. You can switch from ‘Replacement Cost’ on your personal property to ‘Actual Cash Value’.
Note: Know the differences in coverage’s and review this with your agent, as it is very important to know the difference between RC and ACV.
7. You may have coverage’s you don’t need. Review your policy coverage on a regular basis. We have seen unnecessary coverage’s on policies such as ‘Screen Enclosure Coverage’ on homes with no screens. These oversights can be easily fixed by reviewing your coverage with your agent. Make sure you have what you need, not what you are sold by an agent.
8. You may want to raise your deductibles on your ‘Wind Deductible’ within your policy. Deductibles for wind coverage can range from 1% of the insured value, all the way up to 10% of the insured value. Remember, this percentage deductible is from the insured value, not from the percentage of the claim. Check your risk tolerance before making this change to a higher deductible; it could result in a significant rate decrease.
9. Look at raising the AOP (‘All Other Perils’ deductible). This is typically anywhere from $1,000 to $2,500, and it can sometimes be as high as $10,000 or more. Again, check your risk tolerance and speak with your agent.
10. If you choose to do nothing at all, you should still contact your agent at renewal to review your present policy. Contacting your agent for a complete insurance review of your homeowner’s policy to ensure you have the best possible coverage, at the most competitive price.
West Coast Insurance Group Inc.