Homeowners insurance is an important component of protecting your home. A good policy provides protection against damage caused by fire, windstorms, floods, lightning strikes, vandalism, theft, and even earthquakes. But it doesn’t cover everything. For example, you won’t be covered if someone accidentally sets your lawn on fire while mowing it or if you’re hit by a car while walking across your driveway.
That’s why homeowners insurance policies are called “comprehensive.” Comprehensive policies cover most types of losses, including those mentioned above. They also include liability coverage, which protects you and your family from lawsuits resulting from injuries suffered during normal daily activities like walking down stairs, riding bikes, or playing sports.
The best way to find an affordable homeowners insurance is to shop around. You’ll want to compare rates from multiple companies to ensure you get the best deal possible. And don’t forget about discounts. Some insurers offer special deals for people who take certain steps to reduce risk. These could include signing up for automatic payment plans, installing security systems, or installing smoke detectors.
What risks does your policy cover?
Homeowners often assume that their homeowner’s insurance covers everything except what they don’t want to consider. But many things could cause property damage you might not realize is covered under your policy. Here are some examples of common damages that you probably won’t find listed on your policy:
A flood is defined as water that rises above the normal level of a body of water. Flood waters can come from rain, snowmelt, rivers, lakes, oceans, underground streams, groundwater, or springs. A flood can happen anywhere, including inside your house. If it happens during the term of your policy, your insurer will pay for repairs up to your policy’s limit.
An earthquake is a sudden shaking caused by movement along fault lines. Earthquakes occur worldwide, but most damage occurs in areas where people live. An earthquake can cause cracks in walls, floors, ceilings, windows, doors, and foundations. Depending on how strong the quake is, it can even collapse buildings. If it happens during your policy period, your insurer will pay to repair or replace damaged items up to the policy’s limit.
A tornado is a violent storm system characterized by rotating winds that form funnel clouds. Tornados can destroy homes and businesses and sometimes kill people. They can strike anywhere, but the Midwest and Southeast regions experience the highest tornadoes yearly. Tornado damage includes broken glass, roof damage, structural damage, and personal injury. If it happens during a policy period, your insurer pays for repairs up to the limits of your policy.
Here’s how to insure your home
The cost of insuring your home could soon go up. A recent survey found that homeowners are already paying more for insurance because of rising costs. And experts say it won’t stop there. “We’re seeing increases across the board,” says Mark Hurd, president of InsuranceQuotes.com. “There’s no question about it.”
Insurance companies are raising rates to cover increased claims and payouts for natural disasters like hurricanes and wildfires. They’ve also raised prices to cover medical expenses for people covered under individual policies. And some insurers are increasing premiums for commercial property owners.
But you don’t have to worry too much. Experts say most consumers will see little change in their monthly bills. For example, a homeowner policy typically covers damage caused by windstorms, earthquakes, floods, lightning strikes, vandalism, and theft. You might consider buying additional coverage for those risks if you live in a high-risk area. But even if you do, experts say you’ll likely still save money overall.
You’ll save money over the long term if you buy separate flood and earthquake insurance. Flood insurance protects against water damage, while earthquake insurance covers losses due to shaking. You can often find discounts for bundling both types of coverage into one policy.
And if you want to reduce your premium, experts recommend shopping around. Check out different carriers’ websites to compare quotes. Also, ask friends and family members what they paid for similar coverage. You can also use online tools to estimate your potential loss based on where you live, the size of your home, and whether you have a pool or hot tub.
You can also shop for better deals by comparing your current insurer with competitors. Some companies offer discounts for bundling multiple policies together. And you can sometimes qualify for lower rates by adding certain features to your policy, such as installing security cameras.
Experts say you shouldn’t panic just yet. Most people will probably see little increase in their monthly bill. But if you’re concerned, talk to your agent about getting a quote now.
How can an agent help protect your home?
Homeowners insurance protects your property from damage or loss caused by fires, theft, vandalism, storms, earthquakes, floods, and other hazards. If something happens to your house, it could cost thousands of dollars to repair or replace it. But most homeowners don’t know what coverage they need or where to buy it.
Agents can explain your policy options, find discounts to lower your premium, and help you understand the claims procedure and how to file a timely and accurate claim if necessary. They can even recommend trusted companies to handle repairs and replacement costs.
Supporting the health of Western New York.
Health insurance companies must provide coverage to anyone who applies, regardless of pre-existing medical conditions. They are also required to pay out claims in 30 days or less. This helps keep costs down for everyone involved.
Travelers’ Letter to New York Property Insurance Policyholders
Travelers want to inform policyholders about the impact of coronavirus on insurance policies. In addition to providing information about what you can do to prepare for the virus, it guides how to file a claim.
Exclusions will reduce the amount available for claims. There are many ways to prevent coronavirus exposure. If you are sick, contact your doctor immediately. You can find out more about coronavirus here.
This letter is sent to property owners who live in New York state. Many factors influence whether an event will be considered a covered loss under your policy. For example, your home could become vacant and unoccupied if you travel to another city or state during coverage.
Caring for New York for Generations.
The state’s largest hospital system announced plans Wednesday to cut $1 billion in annual spending over the next five years. Cornell University Hospital for Medical Center CEO Dr. Robert M. Lattes told reporters that the cuts would come from reducing administrative expenses, cutting some patient services, and raising co-pays. He added that the plan ensures patients don’t lose access to care.
Hospital officials say the plan is necessary because the Affordable Care Act requires insurers to cover preventive services like mammograms and colonoscopies without charging consumers out-of-pocket fees. But the law also requires hospitals to absorb those costs themselves.
In addition, the federal government requires hospitals to spend more money on primary care physicians and nurses. And it’s making it easier for patients to choose doctors outside traditional networks.
Cornell expects to save $300 million in the first three years alone.