Port Charlotte Home Insurance Tips:
1. You may have too much coverage
It's common for policies to contain inflation-protection provisions that automatically increase your coverage amount. "In most years, that's a good thing," says Scott Richardson, director of the South Carolina Department of Insurance. Now that construction costs have fallen? Not so much.
For now, pass on inflation protection and adjust your coverage amount to a more realistic figure. Lowering replacement value from, say, $300,000 to $250,000 might shave 10% off your premium.
2. A bad rep can cost you
Just as lenders check your credit history before figuring out what rate to charge you, insurers tap into national databases such as the Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (CLUE) to see what claims you've filed in the past. Those records can be full of errors, warns Doug Heller, executive director of Consumer Watchdog, an insurance advocacy group.
Check your insurance report for mistakes at choicetrust.com; it's free if you've been denied coverage ($19.50 otherwise).
3. Did you kwon that a home's history matters
In the market for a new house? It may seem unfair, but claims associated with the property before you buy it can result in your paying more than you would otherwise. "Certain locations [such as those vulnerable to flooding] may be more prone to claims," explains Kiran Rasaretnam, CFO of InsWeb.
To get info on past claims, ask for a copy of the seller's CLUE disclosure report (see No. 3). Yes, you're stuck with the history of the house you buy, but you can use what you find to negotiate a lower price with the seller.