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Homeowner's insurance 101

    

SUMMARY:As a homeowner, you need insurance to protect your property and all the belongings inside. Many Americans think they can live without this type of insurance, but this isn't true.

homeowners insurance 1010A good insurance policy will provide you with a financial safeguard in the event of theft, fire and weather damage. The total incurred losses for homeowners insurance in the United States totaled more than $40 billion in 2015. Moreover, there were nearly 100,000 insurance claims paid out due to lightning damage alone. Here's what you need to know about homeowners insurance.

Compare deductibles

An insurance deductible is the amount you have to shell out on each and every claim you make on your insurance policy. Different insurance providers charge different deductibles, so it's always good to shop around before you sign up for a service. Sometimes, higher deductibles are available at a reduced price, which could save you cash.

Use a price comparison website

There are hundreds of home insurance providers in the U.S., from big corporations to small credit unions. So, where do you start? Using a price comparison website can point you in the right direction. These sites let you compare and contrast insurance companies in your area. Coverage, deductibles, premiums -- comparison websites let you check all of this information in one place.

Replacement cost and actual cash value

There are two important terms that you need to know about before shopping for home insurance: replacement cost and actual cash value (ACV). Replacement cost is how much money insurers think it would take to repair or rebuild your home before you made your claim. ACV is how much money insurers think it would take to repair or rebuild your home at the time of your claim. In many cases, replacement cost is superior to ACV because you can claim for items at the same price they cost before depreciation.

Get a quote

Getting a quote for homeowners insurance is one of the most important steps of the entire process. Once you have found an insurance provider, contact the company directly and ask them for a direct quote based on your personal circumstances. Ask about any hidden costs or fees, too.

Find out what's included in your policy

Different insurance companies cover different household items, so check a policy thoroughly before you go any further. Some packages might not protect you against certain types of events, such as theft or windstorm damage. You might also have to pay extra money for additional coverage. Find out whether an insurance company includes things like living expenses and personal liability in their policy.

Review your insurance on a regular basis

Your circumstances can change over time, so review your insurance policy on a regular basis. This ensures you get the best coverage at the best price. Don't forget, something a home renovation project could change is the amount of money you pay for coverage. You should contact your insurer to find out whether this will affect your policy.

Looking for an insurance policy you can count on? TDECU Insurance Agency specializes in homeowner's insurance in Texas. This Houston credit union provides you with liability in the event of injury or damage, windstorm and flood insurance coverage, protection for personal articles and valuables, and excess liability coverage. Click here to find out more.

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