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3 Simple Steps to Save on Homeowners Insurance


Feb. 12, 2015 Kiplinger

Step One

Get all the discounts you deserve. Bundling auto and home coverage with one insurer can reduce your rates by 10% to 15% (or more if you add an umbrella policy). Home improvements you’ve made since you bought your policy—say, a new roof or electrical system—can earn you a discount. You could also lower your premiums by installing an alarm system, storm shutters or a permanent backup generator. And a major life change, such as getting married or retiring, could trigger a reduction in your rate.

Step Two

Boost your deductible. Raising it from $250 or $500 to $1,000 can cut your premiums by up to 20%, and you won’t be tempted to file small claims that could result in a rate hike. Filing several small claims could raise your rate even if you switch insurers because companies share information through a database called the Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (CLUE).

Step Three

Get quotes from several insurers. Prices can vary significantly by company. And if you have a record of comparison shopping (or asking your current company for a break on premiums), it could prompt insurers to offer you a lower rate. Before you shop, make sure you have enough insurance. Compare rates from several companies at a site such as InsuranceQuotes.com, or find a local independent insurance agent at www.trustedchoice.com. Or contact insurers that don’t sell through independent agents, such as USAA or State Farm. If you find a lower rate, ask your current insurer if it will match that rate.

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