How to Save Money on Your Home Insurance

(This is a guest article by Bailey Harris*)

home owners insuranceMillions of people overpay for home insurance each year. If you think you may be among them or if you are just looking for a few ways to cut costs, the following tips may help you save money on your home insurance premium.

Lower Your Deductible

If you make a claim, you will have to pay what is known as a deductible before your insurance company will agree to pay their part. A low deductible results in a higher annual premium. A high deductible, on the other hand, will provide you with a lower annual premium. You may be able to save 20 percent or more by raising your deductible from $250 to $1,000. A really high deductible--$5,000 or more--could save you as much as 40 percent.

Combine Coverage

Purchasing more than one type of insurance, such as auto and home or umbrella and home, from a single company can help you save a bundle on all of your insurance coverage at the same time. Nearly every insurer offers a multi-policy discount. However, the percentage of the discount can range from company to company, so it is always a good idea to ask exactly how much you can save by combining policies.

Insure Your House Not the Land

Many people pay a higher premium than they need to because they make the mistake of insuring to buy versus insuring to rebuild. You do not need to buy an insurance policy that is equal to the price you paid for your home. All you need is a policy that will cover the cost to rebuild your home and replace the contents within.

Improve Home Security

Some insurers offer special discounts to homeowners who have taken steps to improve home security. Items that frequently result in a discount include fire alarms, carbon monoxide detectors, deadbolts, burglar alarms, and sprinkler systems. Check with your insurer to see if a discount is available and how much you may be able to save by installing one or more of these items.

Disaster-Proof Your Home

Making your home more resistant to fire and water damage or natural disasters, such as windstorms, hurricanes, and earthquakes, may also net you a discount on your home insurance. Some of the improvements that commonly lead to savings include updated heat or electrical systems, reinforced roofing, and shutters.

Maintain Good Credit

Many insurance companies use an "insurance score" to help determine how much customers should be charged for coverage. Your insurance score is based on your credit score, credit history, and other metrics. If you have good credit, you will be charged less for insurance than someone with bad credit.

Seek Out Additional Discounts

There may be other home insurance discounts that you are eligible for, such as a renewal or loyalty discount, a senior or mature policyholder discount, a non-smoker discount, a group discount, or a professional discount. Ask your insurance company for a list of potential discounts as well as eligibility requirements.

Shop Around

Comparison shopping is the best way to save money on your home insurance. The cost of coverage can vary considerably from company to company. You may be able to save hundreds of dollars simply by switching providers. Quotes from various insurance companies are available from free online services. You can also get quotes by calling individual agents in your neighborhood.

*About the author: This is a guest post from Bailey Harris, who writes about homeowners insurance for

*Image Credit: Photograph by renjith krishnan [via]

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