18 Mar Change Your Homeowners Insurance in Five Easy Steps
Times change, and so do insurance companies. As time passes, your homeowners insurance needs will change as well. When you make the decision to try a new insurance company, there are a few steps you should follow. It’s also important to make a list of any major changes that have been made in your lifestyle as well as your home compared to the day you bought your existing policy. A marriage, divorce, a child going to college, or major home improvement will have a direct impact on the amount of insurance you will need.
Follow these 5 easy steps while changing your homeowners insurance policy:
1. Know What Terms and Conditions Are In Your Current Policy
Go over your current policy carefully. Make sure you fully understand the terms and conditions. Note any changes from when you bought the policy until today. It’s also essential that you understand how your policy works and what conditions may apply if you have to file a claim. Make notes about the sections you have concerns about and when you talk to your agent, make sure each question is addressed.
2. Evaluate Your Coverage Requirements
Over time, your insurance needs will change. A recent marriage or divorce, the birth of a child, or upgrading your appliances are all good reasons for wanting to review your homeowners policy. Knowing the current value of your home and possessions will give you a good idea of what type of insurance coverage you need as well as the amount of insurance you should purchase. Don’t forget to include supplemental policies like flood insurance.
3. Find a Trustworthy Agent and Compare Different Quotes
Some people like the convenience of buying a policy online and working with a bot. Insurance may seem confusing but it doesn’t have to be. Work with an agent who will take time to listen to you and your personal insurance needs. Many people buy insurance based on cost, but it is also important to understand the coverages. Do your research and learn about the reputation of both the agent as well as their agency by looking up customer reviews on Google, Yelp and Facebook.
4. Start a New Policy Before Canceling Your Existing One
Before canceling your old policy, you want to make sure your new policy is active and in place. Talk to your new agent and find out for sure the exact date your new policy will take effect. Wait until that day to call your old insurance agent and cancel your policy. By waiting until the day your new policy takes effect, you eliminate any miscommunication with your old agent about when your first policy should be canceled.
5. Inform Your Mortgage Holder (If You Have One)
As soon as your new policy is in effect and your old policy has been canceled, you will need to inform your mortgage holder or lender, if you have one. If you don’t let them know and they find out that your old policy has lapsed or been canceled, they may purchase a policy and add the premiums to your monthly mortgage payment. Calling your lender should be your first priority after changing homeowners insurance policies.
Changing your homeowners insurance policy doesn’t have to be difficult. Knowing your needs and finding the right agent will make things go smoothly. Call Kevin or Marci at Dougherty Insurance today! We can go over your existing policy with you so that you understand your current policy and what you may need to change.