Little-Known Ways to Save on Homeowners Insurance

Installing a home security system, smoke detectors and bundling home with auto insurance are all great ways to chip away at the price of your homeowner’s insurance. Why stop there? There may be several additional discounts available to you. Here are some ideas for discounts that can save you up to 25 percent on your monthly premiums.

Update Old Wiring

Electrical fires account for 6.3 percent, or almost 24,000, of all residential fires, according to the U.S. Fire Administration. This type of fire occurs due to faulty wiring, appliance failure or simply overloading electrical outlets and extension cords. If your home is more than 20 years old, consider updating the wiring to handle the demands of today’s technology.

Kick the Habit

Smoking continues to hold the top spot in causes of house fires in the U.S., killing hundreds of people and causing millions in residential property loss every year. If there is a smoker in your house, it’s usual practice for insurance companies to raise your premium. Contact a local insurance agency; many will also give you a break on rates when you quit smoking.

Gated Communities

Living in a gated community can give you an extra layer of security while giving insurers an extra level of protection, one for which they may be willing to pay. Your “payment” can be anywhere from five to 20 percent off your bill. Using the principle of strength in numbers, just belonging to an HOA may be enough to get you a discount.

Claims-Free Credit

Did you ever think your insurance company would pay you not to make a claim? While it doesn’t work exactly like that, it is a little like the “good-driver discount” that some auto insurers offer. In the end, insurers are just spreading around the savings, which could be up to 20 percent of your premium.

Upgrade Your Roof

Insurance companies regularly pay out on claims for roof damage due to wind, hail, snow and rain. In trying to contain claims, an insurer is likely to reward you for upgrading to new roofing materials that offer increased protection from the elements. Your state department of insurance should have information about impact-resistant materials now available. Upgrading to these materials may also help you qualify for a tax deduction; check with a local insurance agency for more information.

Age Brings Benefits

Because we tend to stick closer to home when we retire, our increased presence is seen as a great way of mitigating any damage that may occur. When we’re at home, we’re more likely to smell a gas leak or know when a pipe bursts. If we can’t avert the damage, at least we can limit it just by being aware of any problems and taking steps to correct them sooner. So when you retire, let your insurer know.

Insurance is a must for homeowners, there’s just no getting around it. By taking steps to reduce risks to your home, you can also earn discounts on your home insurance premiums. For insurance companies, and for homeowners on a budget, every penny saved is indeed a penny earned.

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