We all think it’s a wonderful thing to have a child like MacGyver who’s an absolute whiz with gadgets… Until the day you find out that he has been playing with the circuits in your house and has rewired your entire electrical system! The resulting phone call to your insurance agent letting them know you’ve updated the wiring in your home will end with a heavy sigh and a slim chance of you getting that discount you’re looking for.
Today I am going to teach you 5 Real Ways to save big on Home Insurance, so put on your Sherlock Holmes hat and be prepared to do a little investigative work around your house as we explore ways to save you money.
- Installing New Wiring
Owning a home is a great thing, but not if you don’t have an updated electrical system. Just think about it. Homes with older wiring have a much higher risk of fires occurring due to electrical accidents. When was your wiring last updated… 1984? Odds are is that they’ve made some nice advancements in electrical engineering over 30 years.
“According to the U.S. Fire Administration, in a typical year, home electrical problems result in 67,800 home fires, 485 deaths and $868 million in property losses, according to a 2006 report. The USFA estimates that home wiring causes twice as many fires as electrical appliances.”
With an updated electrical system and new wiring, your home will be a lot safer with less outages and much less risk of fires.
- Making Home Renovations
If your neighbors think you are a clone of Bob Villa it will be you who reap the savings and benefits on your Homeowners Insurance. Everyone loves a good home renovation project, but what many people don’t realize is that by installing that new plumbing or having a new roof put on they are not only making their home more beautiful, they are making it safer. “Safe” is always the key word when thinking about lowering your insurance premiums.
As a leaky faucet is replaced by a new shiny one or an old furnace is replaced with a new energy efficient model, homeowners are creating a home in which they may never need to file a claim for things like fires or water damage.
- Being Non-Smoker
This one is pretty self-explanatory. If you smoke in your home you are not only creating a fire hazard, but you are ingesting pollutants into your walls, carpet and ceilings. Over time this will wreak havoc on your home as you will not be able to get the cigarette damage out without removing wallpaper and recarpeting entire rooms.
“According to the U.S. Fire Administration, smoking caused 18,900 residential fires in 2007, killing 595, injuring 1,200 and causing $327 million in residential property loss.”
Now you’re not going to get a low rate just for being a non-smoker, but kicking the habit is just another way to save money on your premium.
- Staying Claims Free
Have you gone a while without filing a claim in regards to your home? A new policy that insurance companies have been instituting is a Claims Free Discount. This means that homeowners that have spent years living in a home without having to file an insurance claim may be eligible.
This discount is very similar to the Accident Free discount you see on your Auto Insurance. If you go for a long time without an accident then you are eligible for Safety Discounts. (There’s that word again) See our previous article “5 Real Ways to Save on Auto Insurance” for more information.
- Deadbolts, Alarm Systems and Wood Burning Stoves
There are a multitude of simple things that homeowners over look when thinking about discounts. How many fire extinguishers do you have readily available? How far away do you live from a fire hydrant? Here’s just a few ideas to get you started…
- Deadbolts – “A locking mechanism distinct from a spring bolt lock because a deadbolt cannot be moved to the open position except by rotating the lock cylinder.” In other words, if you don’t have these then you should probably get them.
- Alarm Systems – Alarms are a great way to save money and protect your home. Centrally Monitored Alarm Systems are not just for burglars trying to get into your home but can also be installed to notify emergency units in case of fires on your property.
- Wood Burning Stoves – If your primary source of heat in your home is a wood burning stove then you may want to consider upgrading to natural gas if possible. Insurance companies definitely do not want their customers to have open sources of fire in their homes at any point in time.
Remember that SAFER is always BETTER! The safer your house is from fires, burglars and claims in general, the better deal you’ll be getting. So, when your agent applauds your investigative work around the house and asks how you came up with such great discounts you can take off your Sherlock Holmes cap with pride and tell the agent that it’s simply “Elementary, my dear Watson.”