Most homeowners set up homeowners insurance at the last minute, are frequently rushed when making insurance decisions and don’t quite understand everything about their policy. These homeowners insurance tips may help to clarify a few things for you and provide some facts about coverage you didn’t know about.
Dogs and Homeowners Insurance
The last thing that would ever cross people’s minds when choosing a dog breed or saving a pooch from the pound would be homeowners insurance. You’re probably thinking what does insurance have to do with my new pooch?
The fact is, insurance companies are very concerned about the fact that you have one or more dogs and in particular the breeds of the dogs. Insurance companies spend millions yearly for dog bite insurance claims.
In order to cut down on the number of dog bite claims, insurance carriers ask you what breed of dog you have. They check the breed against their list of dogs that are not acceptable because they have a high tendency to bite people.
Unfortunately, it is possible that you will be turned downed for homeowners insurance if the company does not feel your breed of dog is acceptable. However, not all insurance companies work off the same list. So, your breed may actually be acceptable by another company.
Most homeowners are not aware that insurance companies gather personal information from a variety of sources to determine whether you are a high risk for reporting insurance claims. Some carriers call it a risk profile or your insurance score. Profiles may include a history of your previous insurance claims, driving record and credit score.
All insurance companies have a rating system in place, and your score affects the insurance rates you pay.
Inflation Guard Insurance
Inflation guard insurance is an optional coverage that is designed to ensure that you have enough homeowners insurance coverage on your home to keep up with inflation. Standard insurance policies that most people buy do not automatically increase your coverage as your home increases in value. So, if you have a nice place on the coast in Texas, you might want to consider this coverage just in case you take a loss from a tropical storm and need to rebuild.
Your CLUE Report
CLUE reports also referred to as Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange reports are normally created if a person has ever filed an insurance claim on any home for the last five years. The purpose of the CLUE report is to document a history of home insurance losses.
CLUE reports can be used as a tool for prospective buyers to determine the insurance history of a home. Homes that have lengthy or questionable insurance histories could increase the cost of homeowners insurance for that particular home. Buyers must request the report from the current owner of the home.
Most homeowners assume that any time something in their home is damaged they can file an insurance claim. This would be a correct assumption if the problem is in fact covered by your policy.
However, you need to consider whether you really want to file a homeowners insurance claim. Insurance underwriters prefer that homeowners don’t file an insurance claim more than once each 10 years.
Filing multiple claims on homeowners insurance will more than likely raise your insurance rates or cause you to be rejected when looking for new insurance in most states. However, insurance carriers aren’t allowed to increase rates on homeowners in Texas after just one claim.
Make sure you keep accurate records and documentation on your personal belongings so that you’re fully covered in the event of a catastrophic loss. If you have concerns or questions about your homeowners insurance policy, don’t hesitate to talk to your agent for help.