Home Insurance 101: What Home Buyers Should Know

Tips and tricks to save money on homeowners insurance The act of buying a home is a large investment that buyers want to protect. Purchasing homeowners insurance is one of best ways to do that, and if the home is mortgaged, a homeowners insurance or landlord insurance policy for the first year is likely to be on the lender’s checklist of actions that buyers must complete in order to meet loan requirements and close on the home. But buying homeowners insurance is far from a cut-and-dry process. In fact, home buyers who take time to factor in the potential costs of insuring each home they view before making an offer can put themselves into the best position to save a significant amount of money on their annual home insurance costs. 

Consider House-Specific Potential Costs

The best time to save money on future annual homeowners insurance premiums is actually before making any offer to purchase a particular home. Many homes on the market may have features, locations, or condition issues that can make insuring them more expensive than other homes in the same community or even the same neighborhood. 

It is essential to understand what your homeowners’ policy can cover because some of these features, location, and condition issues known to be more costly to insure include: 

  • Older homes or those which have an overall condition more likely to experience losses for wear and tear
  • Homes that have features considered to higher for risk of accidents and injuries, such as trampolines and swimming pools
  • Homes with extra outbuildings or structures that will result in extra insurance costs per structure
  • Homes located in areas known to carry higher risks of flooding
  • Homes located well away from the local fire department or those that have no access to fire hydrants

What buyers can do to further cut the cost of home insurance

Buyers who choose to avoid homes that have location, feature, or condition issues noted above are already well on their way to enjoying lower homeowners insurance premiums, but they may not realize they can slash them even further. Some excellent ways to do this and enjoy lower insurance costs as a homeowner include: 

  • Taking steps to make the home they purchase more secure by adding a security system and features to discourage attempted theft, such as motion alarms and security lighting
  • Installing approved safety fences around pools, spas, and water features 
  • Avoiding higher-risk dog breeds as pets, such as Rottweiler or Pit Bull Dogs
  • Carrying a higher deductible to decrease annual premium costs
  • Having non-essential buildings and structures removed, such as unneeded storage buildings, shops, or garages
  • Keeping the home well-maintained
  • Choosing to store fine jewelry, coin collections, and other expensive possessions securely off-site, such as in bank safety deposit boxes 

It is important to also remember that insurance companies charge more per policy to customers who they feel may be higher risk customers, such as those who have lower credit scores or numerous insurance claims in their past. 

Choose an insurer before making an offer

Homebuyers who form a relationship with a reputable insurance company early in their home shopping process can use it to their advantage when purchasing the coverage their lender will require prior to closing. When trying to find the best home insurance in Minnesota, buyers should discuss both the home being considered for purchase and any other insurance policies they own to see if the insurance company can offer them a significant discount for bundling multiple policies, such as home, car, and life insurance

Buyers can rely on their agent for referrals to high-quality insurance professionals in the area who will be able to help them examine all costs associated with the purchase of a Quail Creek home and help them find ways to save as much on the annual insurance premiums as possible. The buyer’s agent will also be able to point out potential issues with homes that may be more costly for their clients to insure, should they purchase the home.

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