How to Avoid Under-Insuring Your Home

Avoiding Home Under-Insurance

Avoiding Home Under-Insurance

For most people, the family home is the most expensive asset they will own in their lifetime.  It usually takes decades of mortgage repayments and hard work to pay off the family home.  Unfortunately there is also a risk that your home will be damaged or destroyed by accident, fire or natural disaster.  That’s why most people insure their property.  But what if your level of insurance was inadequate and you couldn’t afford to rebuild?  That is called under-insurance.  Here are some simple tips to make sure your policy will cover the cost of rebuilding or repairing your home, if it is damaged.

Update Your Policy When you Renovate

Many people spend thousands of dollars updating their property, including expensive new bathrooms, kitchens, decks and pools.  However, many of them forget to increase the value of their insurance policy.  What happens if there is an earthquake and the pool you just spent $25’000 on develops a massive crack?  It is very important to remember to include any changes in the value of your property in the insurance policy.

Get an Evaluation

One way to ensure your property is fully insured, is to hire a property evaluator to examine it.  A property evaluator is knowledgeable about construction techniques, materials and the costs of rebuilding.  You might have built your property 25 years ago when materials were cheaper and the quality of the construction may be to a higher standard.  A property evaluator understands the cost of materials in today’s money and can price in any higher quality construction used within your home.

Think About Additional Costs

Many people think about the costs of rebuilding without considering the additional costs involved.  If your house burns down, there may be additional costs to remove the wreck of the house.  There may be damage to the utilities going into the house, which require more money.  An earthquake could destroy long water pipes, gas lines and sewerage which run on your property.  If the house contains asbestos, there may be expense associated with removing it.  There may be substantial groundworks required before rebuilding.

If your house was built with poor quality foundations that conformed to the building requirements 50 years ago, that may no longer be the case.  If that house is destroyed, the new house may have to comply to an array of new building requirements.  If your house is built using materials that are now expensive, ensure the policy will cover buying those materials again.

Think About Site Problems

Some properties have tricky issues involved with building on the site.  These issues can increase the cost of rebuilding a home.  Is your land severely sloped?  Are there issues with sinkholes in the area?  Is the site geologically stable for a modern house to be built upon?

Are There Additional Structures?

Think about the expense of attached structures.  If you have recently built a very expensive garage, garden shed or workshop, make sure it is covered in your insurance policy.  If you have an expensive stone wall, make sure your insurance policy also covers that.  An earthquake could destroy everything on your property, not just your house.

Understand Exactly What is Covered

It is crucial to understand that only certain risks will be covered by an insurance policy.  Not all policies cover flood damage in the same way, with water run off being treated differently than flooding from a river.  Many people have been caught out by insurance companies in the past for that.  Read the fine print and understand what natural disasters and criminal acts your property is covered against.

Get Quotes

One way to ensure you are sufficiently insured, is to get a qualified builder to estimate the costs of rebuilding your home.  He will have access to the actual prices of the materials used and will understand the quality required.

Ask Questions

If you are unsure about what is covered in your policy, ask questions!  The insurance company must be upfront about your policy and inform you about what is covered.  If you are talking to them on the phone about a specific point, ask for a reference to the terms and conditions which demonstrate it is covered.

 

 

13 Ways to Lower the Cost of Health Insurance

13 Ways to Save Money on Health Insurance

13 Ways to Save Money on Health Insurance

Health insurance is one of the most expensive parts of the household budget.  Here are 13 simple ways to save money on your health insurance premiums!

1. Comparison Shop
The most common and simplest advice possible is to do your research before choosing a provider.  Compare levels of coverage and cost.  Also consider the reputation of the company.  Ask your colleagues and extended family about the insurance provider they use and if they are happy with the level of service.

2. Negotiate with Your Insurance Company Over Price
You have every right to negotiate with your insurance company over price.  Many people just accept the premium that the insurance company pushes at them every year, but this is not necessary.  Contact the insurance company, ask for loyalty discounts or any other reductions that you can think of given your health condition.

3. Negotiate with Your Insurance Company Over Coverage
If your doctor has told you that a procedure is required, but the insurance company has told you they won’t cover it — lodge an appeal!  Many times you will actually get the insurance company to eventually cover the procedure.  You have nothing to lose by pushing for your best interests.

4. Ask Your Doctor For Help
Your doctor is perhaps the best person to help you navigate the world of health insurance.  Ask their advice on which provider to choose, ask them about about particular types of coverage you need, given your health concerns.

5. Check That Everything is Necessary
Make sure you have a great relationship with your general practitioner and don’t hesitate to ask their advice on hospital stays and tests.  If you are in hospital and the doctor doing the rounds starts to make decisions about tests, you have every right to make sure they are necessary.  If you are suddenly in the hands of a doctor you don’t know, ask your GP about the tests and medical procedures.

6. Choose a Policy With a High Deductible
You can always quickly save money by choosing a higher deductible on your insurance policy.  This can also be negotiated with your insurance provider.

7. Pickup a “Medigap” Policy for Things That Concern You
If your policy doesn’t cover every ailment you are worried about, then buy a “medigap” policy that covers only those specific problems.  This is useful for closing the gaps in your existing policy.  Again, work in conjunction with your local doctor to ascertain which health problems might occur that your existing policy doesn’t fully cover.

8. Use a Health Savings Account
The IRS offers special tax provisions for special savings accounts that are to be used for healthcare.  This is a great way to prepare for any health emergencies and is useful for covering procedures that insurance companies will not insure.

9. Compare the Prices That Hospitals Offer and Negotiate
Many people sometimes forget that hospitals are businesses like any other.  Some off better value for money than others.  Shop around as if you were buying a car, looking at price, quality, reputation of the manufacturer.

10. Look For Tax Deductions on Medical Expenses
There are various tax deductions which you may be able to obtain for medical expenses.  For example people who spend more than 7.5% of their gross income on medical expenses can receive a tax rebate.  People who work for themselves can also receive tax rebates for health insurance.

11. Check Hospital Bills
Don’t trust your hospital to do the sums correctly.  There have been many cases of hospitals charging the incorrect amounts for procedures or even charging for procedures and tests that didn’t happen.

12. Save on Medications by Going Generic
You can always save money on your medications by going generic.

13. Be Healthy!
One of the best ways to save money on your health care is to look after yourself.  By eating well and exercising you can avoid the hospital for a very long time and have a happier life!

Cheaper Home Insurance Premiums

Home Insurance

Home Insurance


In recent years the number of natural catastrophes that have occurred world wide has increased. Some scientists suggest that this is due to increasing global temperatures and related climate change. Whatever the cause, it has had a dramatic effect on the cost of insurance premiums as more natural disasters occur.

Everyone wants to make sure that their home is covered by insurance that handles natural disaster incidents but it is increasingly difficult to do so with high premiums. Fortunately there are a number of ways to obtain insurance for natural disasters and lower the cost of premiums.

A lot of people simply choose an insurance policy from the Internet and hope that it covers all of the natural disasters appropriately. Others just walk into an insurance agency and hope that the insurance agent gives them the right insurance at a good price. Unfortunately you may not get the best deal and may not have the most comprehensive cover against natural disasters. You need to scrutinize the policy in it’s entirety and look at ways you can lower the premium.

One way to save on premiums is prepare your home for natural disasters. If your local area experiences a lot of storms, you could install measures which prevent damage, like storm shutters. Then you could find an insurer that gives you a discount on your premium for having those shutters installed. In the long run the money saved is substantial. You can also install security devices or get a dog to save money on your home insurance as it reduces the chances that your home will be burgled.

You can also combine, or consolidate your insurance policies. You can obtain a discount on your insurance costs if you combine policies, so get you car insurance, home insurance and life insurance through the same company. Discuss a discount with the insurance company directly or ask your insurance agent to negotiate on your behalf.

It’s also a great idea to exclude the value of your land from any insurance policies. Natural disasters won’t affect the land (unless you have a property built very close to the coastline). So if the insurance company asks you for the value of your property, just include the price of rebuilding the home and the value of the contents of the home.

By using these three simple tips, you can save a great deal of money on the cost of insurance in the long term. With the increase in natural disasters it’s more important than ever to have sufficient insurance.

Methods For Buying Insurance

How to Buy Insurance

How to Buy Insurance

Obtaining an insurance policy is obviously an important decision. The insurance policy can be purchased from a number of places, via a neighborhood broker and on the internet. Lots of people like to acquire insurance coverage on the net as it permits them to get every thing done in the comfort of their homes and so they don’t need to travel anywhere asking about details. Nevertheless, a range of folks like choosing hometown insurance professionals as they believe a real person can give them more detailed and accurate info. Let’s look into the issues, in which selecting a neighborhood agent and internet insurance vary:

It’s possible you’ll spot numerous types of insurance policies at an insurance provider’s web-site and you may compare among a number of provider’s products as well. One important thing is to be aware of the insurance coverage terms, since they are not quickly understandable by a layperson. A broker might assist with all the sorts of policies available in the market and can also help you in determining which policy fits your needs.

A lot of insurance vendors offer you insurance coverage calculator software on their web pages so that prospective clients can determine the right amount of premium and insurance policy coverage for their selves according to their needs. On the other hand, an insurance dealer may additionally advise you on just how much insurance coverage is better for your age and what the rates will be for the insurance plan chosen by you. A broker may also tell you about the general trends and returns in a distinct period based on their personal experience that you might not locate online.

Getting insurance coverage can be a chaotic task specially when it requires medical examinations – often required when going for a medical policy. Same is the situation when claiming that you need special attention from an insurance agent which will assist you with the whole process. However lots of insurance vendors have now streamlined this process and made it possible for the clients to rapidly accomplish everything with the aid of prompt information and facts on the net.

As you speak with an insurance agent, he/she is able to offer you the information right away on what ever your issues are unlike on-line where you can get specific information only. An insurance agent is aware of your local environment and may enable you to chose a insurance plan that is appropriate for your environment, he/she can also make important alterations if neccessary unlike online where you can’t revise info when submitted.

These days there is a large database of information on-line and everyone refer to that and if you are also someone that has a very busy life and seek approaches to save time and money then going on the internet is perhaps the better solution.

It’s pointless to debate in relation to which way to get an insurance policy is best due to the fact there are pros and cons for both approaches. It really is your decision to make a decision based on what your focal points are because you will definitely gain and lose some or the other benefits in selecting either of the ways.

Getting Cheap Home Insurance

Cheap Home Insurance

Cheap Home Insurance

Regardless whether you will be insuring a home or a apartment, if you don’t do some cost comparisons on your home insurance coverage you will be shelling out too much. Fees from different insurance firms could differ by several hundred dollars a year for the same insurance policies, so taking a couple of minutes comparing homeowners insurance estimates is going to be well worth your while.

The fastest and most convenient way to generate property insurance quotes is to pay a visit to an insurance policy comparison web site, as these internet sites offer you instant price quotes from a range of insurance agencies all in one place.

Initially you fill in a simple on-line web form with your insurance specifics, including the price of your residence, the place your property is situated, and what insurance deductible you would like.

As soon as you send in the form, your data is sent to a group of top rated insurance agencies that might suit your specifications. These companies work up personalized estimates and deliver those to you.

Once you have your estimates in hand it is possible to review all of them and pick the supplier with the best fee along with the greatest coverage.

There are alternative methods to lower your insurance policy expenses. In addition to price comparisons, here are a few different options that will help you reduce your homeowners premium even more:

Raise your insurance deductible. By just increasing your insurance deductible you’ll save up to 35% to 40% on your monthly premiums. This may also prevent you from filing lots of minor insurance claims which could cause your insurance corporation to cancel your insurance policy.

Try to find savings. Special discounts immediately lessen your premiums. A few of these special discounts include:

1. A multi-policy discount when you’ve got both your property and your vehicle covered by the same supplier.

2. A security discount if you’ve got precautionary features which include dead-bolt locks, window locks, and a security alarm installed.

3. A safe practices price reduction when you have safety features like smoke detectors along with fire extinguishers.

4. A no smokers discount if you don’t smoke in your house.

5. A aged persons price cut when you’re Fifty five years or older and are retired.

6. A discount for paying annually as opposed to quarterly or once a month.

Providers don’t always let you know about all the rate reductions they have, which means you must ask your broker to offer you all of the special discounts you can get.

To put it simply, if you do not evaluate costs the odds are you will likely spend way too much for homeowners insurance. The good thing is it will take less than 20 minutes to submit an insurance questionnaire, receive your insurance rates, appraise them, and select the provider that could offer the absolute best rate.