The best way to protect your home is to insure it properly.
One of the largest investments you'll most likely ever make is your home, and naturally, you'll want to insure it adequately. But how do you determine the right amount of homeowners insurance coverage to have?
First things first: Don't make the mistake of assuming you only need a homeowners insurance policy to cover only the market or resale value of your home. In some cases, this may be a sufficient amount of coverage. In most cases, it's not. This is especially true for older homes and homes in urban areas suffering from a decline in property values. In fact, market value has very little, if anything, to do with what's known as replacement cost.
To help you determine how much home insurance you need, homeowners insurance companies will likely calculate the cost to rebuild a home based on certain criteria, including:
- square footage
- type and quality of construction
- cost of materials
- any additional amenities or special features
Knowing this, make sure you request a policy that includes full replacement cost of your home when you get a quote for homeowners insurance.
What does homeowners insurance typically cover?
Not only does homeowners insurance typically cover the structure of your home, your homeowners policy may also protect your personal property, as well as structures not attached to your home (such as a shed), and additional expenses you may incur if you can't stay in your house after you experience a covered loss.
Personal liability and medical expense coverage are also generally included in your homeowners insurance policy. Personal liability insurance will protect you if someone is injured on your premises or if you unintentionally injure someone on your property or even away from it. Medical expense coverage will pay for medical treatment when a visitor is injured on your property, regardless of who's at fault. The cost of personal liability and medical expense coverages is minimal compared to the amount of they offer, too.
In addition to these two coverages, you can choose several optional coverages for even more protection. For example, if you own expensive jewelry, collectibles, or artwork, you can purchase a floater and have these items worked into your homeowners insurance policy. Without this, coverage for these items is limited. If you have a finished basement, make sure you have enough sewer and drain backup coverage to pay for replacing the walls, furnishings, and stored items in your basement.
Once you assess your situation and know what you want to cover, discuss your needs, expectations, and concerns with your insurance company. Review which coverages are included in a policy as well as any optional coverages that can be added. Together, you can decide how to best insure your home and valuables and walk away knowing you have the right amount of home insurance.
With Progressive Home Advantage®, underwritten by Homesite Insurance, you can discuss your homeowners insurance options with licensed counselors at any time. Why not start a quote for homeowners insurance right now?
The information in this blog may vary based on your particular state or situation. Always refer to your insurance policy for your specific coverages.