When buying homeowners insurance, ask around for assistance

Buying homeowners insurance is an important decision. Thank goodness there are plenty of people to help make it.

Among the helpers are:

  1. The internet… Online quotes from national insurance companies are a wonderful way to get a fundamental feel for what insurance will cost. If quotes (for identical coverage) are solicited from several companies, one can quickly see equivalencies and variations that can lead to a paring down of possible insurance providers.
  2. Insurance agents… By and large, the industry is peopled with knowledgeable agents who can cut through the financial jargon and present understandable policy choices. Buyers have different options and priorities, given their financial situations and such, but agents have seen them all and can give experienced counsel to someone buying homeowners insurance.
  3. Mortgage companies… A homebuyer’s mortgage holder is as interested as the homebuyer in securing a good insurance policy for a structure. They may have their own insurance stipulations tied to the mortgage and probably have a list of local insurers who have performed well in the past with other clients.
  4. Family… This is a little trickier because sometimes family members can get tied personally to an insurance agent or company. Friendship sometimes can interfere with bottom line considerations. The best suggestion is to include the family’s recommended insurer in the mix of several insurers and compare. If it is the best choice, the comparison will show it.
  5. State insurance commissioner’s office… This office along with Better Business Bureau offices and the insurance industry association’s office are resources for someone buying homeowners insurance. They can provide straight information on the financial integrity and performance of the companies that offer insurance in the area. The number of companies red-flagged for nonperformance always is small, but it is good to know about them before a homebuyer falls victim to one of them.

Buying homeowners insurance is not something a person usually does more than a couple of times, unless the person is extremely mobile—upwardly, or in his employment. But it is a critical enough purchase that getting it right is important. Getting help with the decision is a good idea.

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