Tips on selecting a Homeowners insurance agent in Houston, Texas
Selecting an Independent Houston home insurance agent, also known as an insurance broker, who represents several homeowner's insurance companies and therefore does not have a vested interest in selling you a homeowners policy from any one particular company is a wise decision. The greatest advantage to having your own Independent Houston homeowner's Insurance agent is that an Independent agent has a vested interest in keeping you happy. Accordingly, he will be more familiar with your individual situation and can guide you through the process of choosing an insurance policy suited to your needs and budget. An Independent Houston home insurance agent will be better informed of less advantageous conditions from one Homeowner Company to the next, and can quickly help to guide you to an ideal carrier. You can always change homeowner's insurance carriers without changing your Independent Houston home insurance agent.
Tips on Buying a Houston Home Insurance Policy
Read the sections below thoroughly and educate yourself about the different kinds of Houston homeowner's insurance coverage available. Our Houston licensed homeowner's insurance agents are ready to assist you. Please call us at 713-785-2138.
Know the Cost of Your Houston Home Insurance Policy.
Before you consider buying a home insurance policy or even shopping for a quote in Houston, Texas, you need to ask yourself some basic questions:
How much will a Texas homeowner's insurance policy cost me per month?
Are there homeowner's insurance deductibles I must pay before the homeowner's insurance policy begins to help cover my costs?
What does the Texas homeowner's insurance policy cover? What isn't covered?
Know Exactly What your Texas Home Insurance Policy Covers.
While most policies cover basic damages due to hazards, theft, and some personal injuries, some don't cover everything. Find out what it would cost to totally replace your Houston area home in the case of complete destruction, and base the level of the home insurance policy on that (plus the cost of your possessions). If you live in a flood zone, or in an area like Houston that is prone to natural disasters, make sure to find out what's covered and what's not. Many basic Texas homeowner's insurance policies don't cover damages from some types of natural disasters.
Don't Underinsure Coverage for your Houston Home.
Make sure your Texas homeowner's insurance policy reflects the current value of your home. Often times, a Texas home insurance policy is purchased upon buying the home, and then is never reevaluated when additions or upgrades are made. If your Houston area home has undergone any significant remodels or additions, or if you have greatly added to the value of your possessions and home interior, you need to re-evaluate your Houston homeowner's insurance.
Improve Your Houston area Home Security.
You can usually get discounts of at least 5 percent for a smoke detector, burglar alarm or dead-bolt locks. Some home insurance companies offer to cut your premium by as much as 15 or 20 percent if you install a sophisticated sprinkler system or a fire and burglar alarm that alerts the police, fire or other monitoring stations. These systems aren't cheap and not every system qualifies for a discount - so, before you buy such a system, find out which one your insurer recommends, how much the device would cost, and how much you would save on your premiums.
Maintain a Good Credit Score.
Establishing a solid credit history can also cut your home insurance costs. Insurers are increasingly looking at credit information to price Houston homeowner's insurance policies. To protect your credit standing, pay your bills on time, don't obtain more credit than you need and keep your credit balances as low as possible. Check your credit record on a regular basis and have any errors corrected promptly so that your record remains accurate.
Raise Your Deductible On Your Houston Home Insurance Policy.
Deductibles are the amount of money you have to pay toward a loss before your insurance company starts to pay on a claim, according to the terms of your policy. The higher your deductible, the more money you can save on your premiums. Nowadays, most insurance companies recommend a deductible of at least $500. If you can afford to raise your deductible to $1,000, you may save as much as 25 percent. Remember, if you live in a disaster-prone area, like Houston, your insurance policy may have a separate deductible for certain kinds of damage. If you live near the East Coast, you may have a separate windstorm deductible; if you live in a state vulnerable to hail storms, you may have a separate deductible for hail; and if you live in an earthquake-prone area, your earthquake policy has a deductible as well.