When it comes to navigating insurance, it can be a confusing process. If you’re in the process of purchasing your first home or condominium, you may be looking to protect your dwellings or personal belongings. However, do you have questions about home insurance you feel you should have the answers to? Too embarrassed to ask a family member, friend, or insurance agent? Fear not, in this article the Good Hands Advice team will be answering 10 questions about home insurance that you may be too embarrassed to ask.
Home Insurance FAQs
Is Home Insurance Mandatory?
Unlike car insurance, home insurance is not required by law in Canada. However, home insurance not only protects the physical structure of your home but may protect the contents within it as well. If you’re applying for a mortgage, one of the requirements can be to have home insurance, and if you’re renting, some landlords may require tenant insurance prior to moving in.
What Does Home Insurance Cover?
Your home insurance typically covers your home as well as structures that are attached to it – such as a deck or garage, detached private structures (like a tool shed or fence), as well as your personal property. So, if your treasured possessions are stolen, damaged or lost, you can be covered.
When Am I Eligible to File a Claim, and How?
Any time you’ve experience a loss or damage to your property, that is included in your insurance policy, you may be eligible to file a claim. It’s best to contact your insurance provider as soon as possible so they can begin working on your file. Take plenty of photos of record lost/damaged items to help the claims process. For Allstate customers, visit our website to file a claim online or find a number of a claims representative in your province.
What Are Some Considerations I Should Keep in Mind When Purchasing Home Insurance?
Some considerations to keep in mind when purchasing home insurance are the following:
- Assess your insurance needs beyond what a typical home insurance policy covers – i.e., do I need added coverage against water damage protection, protection for my home business, or property in a storage facility?
- What are some of the discounts offered by my insurer to help lower the cost of my premiums?
- Budgeting – consider asking yourself if you’d rather pay a higher premium (the cost of your insurance), but a lower deductible (how much you pay when filing a claim) or a lower premium and a higher deductible?
How Are Home Insurance Rates Calculated?
There are a variety of factors that may impact the cost of your home insurance. Some of these factors include where you live, the age of your roof, how the home is heated, age of the pipes, type of electricity, replacement cost of the home, etc. Our article, Demystifying Home Insurance Rates, goes into more depth about how these factors are calculated.
Is Everything in my Home Covered Under Home Insurance?
As mentioned earlier, your home insurance will provide basic protection for the structure of your home as well as its possessions. However, there may be a limit to the amount of coverage on personal items. You may want to consider buying a Personal Articles Floater which provides broader risk coverage for theft and loss. You may be eligible to receive reimbursement for misfortunes, like when a stone falls out of a wedding ring.
If I’m Renting, do I Still Need Insurance?
Some landlords may require you to purchase tenant insurance, while some may not. However, we recommend purchasing tenant insurance. Tenant insurance not only covers your personal possessions, but it also provides personal liability coverage in case someone is accidentally hurt while visiting you. It can also provide coverage if you accidentally cause damage to the rental property.
If I’m Looking to Buy a House, When Should I Purchase Home Insurance?
Before buying a home, get a home insurance quote using the details of the home. This will help you understand if there are any challenges or factors to be aware of when insuring the home. Ideally it is recommended that you purchase home insurance before you close on the home.
How Often Do I Need to Pay My Home Insurance Premiums?
Some insurance companies may offer you the option to pay monthly or annually. Be sure to assess your financial situation first to see which option is right for you.
What Can I do to Reduce My Home Insurance Premiums?
There are many different steps you can take to help reduce your home insurance premiums. For example, you may be eligible for discounts if you bundle your home and auto insurance with the same insurer, if you install a security system, if you’re claims free for at least one year, if you don’t have a mortgage, or if you install flood protection devices.
When it comes to insurance, there’s no need to be embarrassed. Our dedicated team of agents are here to help assist you and ensure that you are in good hands.
This information has been provided for your convenience only and should not be construed as providing legal or insurance advice.