Congratulations! After a long search, you have finally found “the” home, your offer has been accepted, and you’ve signed innumerable documents. Now what? Before you begin to actually move, you need to find a homeowners insurance policy that protects your large investment and meets all the needs of your Jersey Shore real estate. At this point a wise purchaser will make another investment–one of time–to find the right policy in terms of cost, coverage, and service.
- The amount of your insurance should cover the cost of replacing or rebuilding your Jersey Shore real estate holding. That amount is not the same as market value (or even what you paid) since you already own the land. To determine the replacement cost of homes, many insurance companies use software that considers the features of your home and calculates the cost to rebuild. In addition, most policies include coverage for up to 125% of that cost.
- Personal property. Most policies cover personal property at 50% to 75% of the replacement value of the home. Consider adding separate endorsements (also called riders or floaters) for valuables such as fine art, expensive collections, jewelry, etc. How much extra does each of these “extras” cost?
- Explore consumer guides and online sites and interview agents for price quotes. The site for state insurance departments will give you typical rates charged by major insurers in your state. Check Ambest.com and Standard and Poors to ascertain financial stability of the companies you’re considering.
- Don’t consider price alone. Look for quality service and a solid track record. Registered complaint information can be found at NAIC.com.
- Discounts. Many companies will give you a discount in price if you insure both your car and your Jersey Shore real estate with them. Ask about other discounts for adding preventative devices such as smoke detectors, deadbolts, security systems, storm shutters, roof reinforcement, modernized plumbing, heating and electrical systems, etc. In addition, because they are at home more often and thus able to quickly detect problems, over 55 retirees often receive discounts.
- Credit rating. Since insurers are increasingly using credit information to influence the price of policies, the higher your credit rating, the lower the cost.
- Long -term customers sometimes qualify for discounts, generally 5% for a 3 to 5 year relationship and 10% for 6 years or more.
- Deductibles The higher the deductible (the amount you pay out of pocket for each claim), the lower the premium. Insurers are currently recommending a $500 deductible, but if you raise that figure to $1000, you can save as much as 25%. Your financial situation will be the deciding factor here.
Coming in PART II…INSURANCE COVERAGE AND SERVICES
Patrick Parker and his Realty Team are experts in Buyer Brokerage and specialize in representing your best interests, negotiating with your goals in mind and getting you the best possible deal when you buy your next Jersey Shore home.
When representing you as a Seller, they go the extra mile to help you achieve your goals. Patrick and his Team are constantly researching the market and property values so your Jersey Shore real estate is priced effectively from day one. They also make sure the public knows your home is for sale by using innovative advertising and marketing techniques to attract potential buyers.
For more information about buying or selling a Jersey Shore home, please call Patrick at 732-455-5252 or via email with our convenient contact form.