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In 1991 Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired at the age of 38. Now, into their 4th decade of this financially independent lifestyle, they invite you to take advantage of their wisdom and experience.

How to Save Money on Home Insurance

When You Retire

Anne Davis

We have some helpful tips if you're getting close to retirement and you are looking to invest in some cheaper home insurance. We offer you the dos and don'ts on shopping for home insurance for pensioners.

 

Do Your Research

Itís important when purchasing any insurance that you take your time shopping around and that you fully understand what kind you need and the different options that are out there.

Whether youíre a first-time buyer making sure you buy a home the right way or you are checking to see what other options are available, research is the first step in the process to making sure you find worry free housing.

Contact Your Insurance Department

Start with contacting your insurance department. Every state has one, though the services they offer vary from state to state. Their job is to regulate companies to protect the consumer, so they are an invaluable resource when looking for insurance.

They offer help in understanding the best homeowners in your state. Often the State Insurance Department provides buying guides on their websites as well. 

They can give you advice on what sort of pitfalls to avoid when shopping for insurance, and if you have specific companies in mind already, you can ask them if they have any complaints filed under those companies as well as offer a rate comparison guide.

For rate comparisons, keep in mind that these are not the same as a quote. You wonít know the exact price a company will offer you unless you receive a quote from them since several factors determine insurance rates.

Get Quotes from Multiple Companies

Be sure to get more than just one or two quotes. We recommend looking into at least three separate companies at a minimum. There are plenty of options out there, and you want to get exactly what you need. 

Compare ratings on the companies from third-party sites

When comparing insurance companies to one another be sure that you are using user ratings from independent sites that are not affiliated with these companies. You can also look at consumer magazines for ratings or ask a trusted friend or colleague for their personal experiences.

Take Note of Their Customer Service

Not only is it important that your insurance company offers you affordable rates, but it is equally important that you are provided with good customer service.

Undoubtedly, you will run into issues throughout the years, and having a company that listens to you and is quick to respond to your needs ó especially when dealing with homeowners insurance after your house is hit by a flood or fire. Take note of how these companies treat you when shopping around.

 

What about homeowners insurance discounts?

Discounts are where you will save the most money. As a retiree, there are many advantages that can come with owning a home and being insured. For starters, itís a great way to optimize your money in retirement. So you will want to start saving right away. You can start by looking into the best kind of discounts out there.

Mature Credit

If your home is your permanent residence and your partner is over the age of 65, you may qualify for credit on your insurance. This is usually because most retirees spend more time at home and as such can catch small fires or gas leaks faster, thus preventing damage.

Claims-Free Discount

Often insurance companies will reward you if you have owned a home for over 10 years without incident. They may also reward you for being a long-term member of them.

Gated-Community Credit

Theoretically, gated communities have added security, which makes their locations more secure. Some insurance will give you discounts for owning a home in secured locations.

Homeowners Association Credit

Similar to the Gated-Community Credit, being in a homeowners association adds extra security as well as extra maintenance to a home. Both of these factors contribute to a safer home, so some companies may offer a discount.

Be sure to check for obscure discounts as well. There are discounts for recent homebuyers, for nonsmokers, and for using automatic payments. Always check so you are sure you are getting the lowest cost possible. 

Is homeowners insurance cheaper without a mortgage?

No, however, most mortgages require you to have homeownerís insurance, and they are also specific in what kind of insurance you need to have. Once you have paid off your homeowners insurance, you have more leeway, so you can tailor your insurance to better fit your needs.

Raise Your Deductible

How do you lower homeowners insurance premiums? Well, the easiest way would be to increase your deductible. A deductible is the amount of money you are responsible for when filing a damage claim with your insurance.

Should a disaster occur, this may cost you more, but if you have finished paying off your mortgage, that plus paying less on the insurance monthly fee could make such a risk worth it.

Bundle Your Policies

Most companies offer you discounts if you bundle your home, auto, life, and other insurance together. Consider your options for health care insurance, too. In your research when looking for good homeowners insurance, be sure to check out the other kinds of insurance they offer and compare those as well.

Adding Features to Your House

Your premium is not based on how much your home is worth, but instead on multiple factors like how much it would cost to repair and the likelihood of it suffering damage. This is why you can often bring down your monthly fees by adding features to your house that reduce the risk of damage or costs.

Features that could reduce your costs include things like modernizing your heating system, installing storm shutters, adding extra security to your home, or adding shatterproof glass to your home.

Donít Add the Value of Your Land to Your Insurance

In addition to modernizing your home, when looking for and understanding homeowners insurance, be sure to only include the value of the home and items in it, not the cost of the land it sits on.

Similar to the point above, a homeowners insurance policy bases your premium on possible repair costs and risk, not on the overall value of your home. So it is an additional cost you donít need to add to include the cost of the land your home sits on.

Stay with the Same Insurer

Most insurance companies will lower your premium the longer you are a customer with them. So unless you see better insurance, itís usually a good idea to stay with the same insurance company long-term. This is also why itís equally important you do your research and choose the right insurance from the beginning.

Be Sure to Reassess Each Year

As time goes on, you will likely make changes to your home, whether itís installing new windows or buying expensive collectibles. Check that your insurance covers these changes. This includes making sure you arenít paying too much for an item that has depreciated in cost over time.

This is why you should reassess your insurance annually. Chances are, there are some costs you can shave off your premium.

Revisit the tips in this article annually. Even if a discount canít be applied right away, that doesnít mean this will still be the same a year from now.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Breanne Lingo is a home insurance specialist with the insurance comparison site, ExpertInsuranceReviews.com.

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About the Authors

 
Billy and Akaisha Kaderli are recognized retirement experts and internationally published authors on topics of finance, medical tourism and world travel. With the wealth of information they share on their award winning website RetireEarlyLifestyle.com, they have been helping people achieve their own retirement dreams since 1991. They wrote the popular books, The Adventurerís Guide to Early Retirement and Your Retirement Dream IS Possible available on their website bookstore or on Amazon.com.

contact Billy and Akaisha at theguide@retireearlylifestyle.com

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