Home Owner's Insurance

HOI is required if you will have a mortgage.  You can choose anyone you like.  Should you not have a contact and would like a referral, we would be happy to suggest a trusted carrier.

 

WHAT FACTORS DETERMINE THE PRICE

 

FACTORS WITHIN YOUR CONTROL

  • Most carriers use an ‘insurance score’ to determine your premium.  The insurance score is determined by looking at many variables on your credit report including:  the number of open accounts; amount of credit available to you; number of late payments; and length that you have held your accounts.
  • Deductible:  This is the amount you will pay in the event of a covered loss prior to the insurance company making payment.  Deductible choices to consumers have grown over the past few years, and some consumers are choosing deductibles as high as $5000 to lower their annual homeowner’s insurance cost.
  • Previous claims history:  If you have filed numerous claims on a renter’s or homeowner’s insurance policy in the past three years, your homeowner’s insurance premium is likely to be much higher.  Always call your agent to discuss a loss prior to filing a claim.  Your agent’s advice is valuable as you decide how to move forward in the event of a loss.
  • Prior insurance history:  Are you currently renting a home or apartment?  Do you have a renter’s insurance policy?  If so, you are likely to receive a discount when you purchase a homeowner’s insurance policy.
  • Characteristics of the home:
    • Age of home.  Typically, newer the home, the lower your premium.
    • Age of roof.  Some carriers now limit the coverage on older roofs.
    • Material home is constructed?
    • Do you have security features such as an alarm system, dead bolt locks, and fire extinguishers?  These features should lower your premium.
  • Type of coverage:
    • Replacement cost or actual cash value insurance policy?
    • If you have a mortgage, you will need replacement cost policies will pay the amount to repair or rebuild your home, even if it exceeds the stated dwelling coverage on your policy, up to a specified percentage.  An actual cash value policy only pays the value of the damaged property at the time of the loss, regardless of the cost of repairing or rebuilding the property.  In other words, your insurance payment with an actual cash value policy considers depreciation.
  • Multiple policies with one company:
    • Do you insure your vehicles with the same company that will insure your home?  The majority of insurance companies will provide a multiple policy discount when you insure more than one item with that company.  Often, the savings is substantial.  Be certain to inquire about a multiple policy discount when searching for a homeowner’s insurance company.

 

A couple rolling out a rug on the wood floor

 

 

FACTORS OUT OF YOUR CONTROL

  • The Insurance Services Office (ISO) rating of the fire department that services your residence.  The ISO is an independent company that rates every community in the United States for fire and emergency readiness. The ISO rating is then used to determine the insurance rates for the community that the fire department services. The communities are rated on items like manpower, equipment and water supply.  The ratings range from what is referred to as a Town Class 1 to a Town Class 10, with 1 being the best rated fire departments.  If the fire department servicing your residence has a lower ISO Town Class, your homeowner’s insurance premium will be lower as well.
  • The distance of your home to the fire hydrant and fire station.

While the cost is important, the advice and service you receive from a reputable agent can be invaluable.  Understanding your homeowner’s insurance coverages and being confident these coverages meet your needs should be the primary concern when purchasing a policy.  Find an agent that can explain your options and help you make the best choice for your needs.  Purchasing a policy that does not adequately protect your contents or provide the right amount of liability coverage will do you no good in the event of a loss.  Agencies that offer annual policy reviews; accessibility when you have a potential claim; and service when you need to make a change will make your insurance experience not only more pleasant, but a better value in the long run. 

Provided by Dianne Parker of Allstate, 770-251-7176, 45A Sutherland Drive, Newnan, Ga 30263

 

 

White houses with red roof and red umbrella

 

Policies include 6-Types of Protection

John Thompson Agency. 770-757-1375 / john.thompson@allstate.com.  Call us for more details on any aspect of these and to make sure you are properly protected.

 

DWELLING COVERAGE

Dwelling coverage is what comes immediately to mind when someone says 'home insurance.' It protects the structure of your house against covered perils such as fire, wind, lightning, and hail. You should have enough dwelling coverage to rebuild your house from the ground up should it be destroyed by a covered event. One caution: Separate policies are needed for flood and earthquake coverage

 

OTHER STRUCTURES COVERAGE

Other Structures protection is exactly what you might think. It protects sheds, detached garages, and fences from covered events. Typically, coverage limits are set at 10% of the amount of dwelling coverage, but you can purchase more protection if necessary

 

PERSONAL PROPERTY PROTECTION

Personal Property coverage protects your possessions in case they're stolen or destroyed by a covered peril. Electronics, clothing, and furniture are among the items in this category. Limits typically are set at between 50% and 70% of your dwelling coverage limit. However, coverage is often limited for certain high-value items such as jewelry or furs – these can be covered fully by scheduling an endorsement to your policy

 

PERSONAL LIABILITY PROTECTION

Personal Liability protection helps if someone sues after being hurt on your property or suffering property damage because of an event caused by your or a member of your household. It can pay for your legal defense and for any settlement or award in the lawsuit, up to your coverage limits. You also can be protected from injuries caused by your pets. The coverage limit typically is set at $100,000, but you can purchase additional coverage

 

LOSS OF USE COVERAGE

Loss of Use coverage kicks in if your house becomes uninhabitable because of a covered event. While it's being repaired or replaced, this coverage helps with your living expenses, including hotel and restaurant bills. Limits typically are set at 20% of your dwelling coverage limit; however, sometimes policies include time limits as well

 

MEDICAL PAYMENTS COVERAGE

Medical Payments coverage helps if you're responsible for the injuries of someone who does not want to sue. It can pay medical expenses up to your coverage limit. That limit typically is set at $1,000, but you can purchase additional coverage.

 

flood insurance

 

Do I Need Flood Insurance?

  • Floods are the nation’s most common and costly natural disaster and cause millions of dollars in damage every year.
  • Homeowners and renters insurance does not typically cover flood damage.
  • Floods can happen anywhere--More than 20 percent of flood claims come from properties outside the high risk flood zone.
  • Flood insurance can pay regardless of whether or not there is a Presidential Disaster Declaration.
  • Most federal disaster assistance comes in the form of low-interest disaster loans from U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and you have to pay them back. FEMA offers disaster grants that don't need to be paid back, but this amount is often much less than what is needed to recover. A claim against your flood insurance policy could and often does, provide more funds for recovery than those you could qualify for from FEMA or the SBA--and you don't have to pay it back.
  • You may be required to have Flood insurance.  Congress has mandated federally regulated or insured lenders to require flood insurance on mortgaged properties that are located in areas at high risk of flooding. But even if your property is not in a high risk flood area, your mortgage lender may still require you to have flood insurance.
  • Flood insurance helps more: Check out your state's flood history with FEMA's interactive data visualization tool, check the FEMA website.  Roll your cursor over each county to see how many flooding events have happened. The tool allows you to compare how much FEMA and the U.S. Small Business Administration have provided in terms of federal disaster aid after a Presidential Disaster Declaration to the amount the National Flood Insurance program has paid to its policyholders. It's easy to see that having flood insurance provides a lot more help for recovery.

 

What You need to know when buying Flood Insurance

  • Ask your agent the right questions.
  • Know what is and is not covered. Contents are not covered by a building/structure flood policy. You'll need another policy for contents within the building.
  • There is typically a 30 day wait period between when you buy a flood insurance policy and when it goes into effect, but there are some exceptions.
  • There is a congressionally-mandated surcharge added to all National Flood Insurance Program policies.

If you need more information or help with securing a Flood Policy, please contact The Thompson Agency Group, John Thompson @ 770.502.2227 or john.thompson@allstate.com