article

Home Insurance 101: The Fundamentals of Home Quality

By Ryan Hanley via Realty Times

bluehammer

Buying a home represents one of the biggest purchases that an individual can make in his or her lifetime. As such, the decision should not be taken lightly, and you'll want to review many factors as you search for your dream residence.

The U.S. Census Bureau reported 501,000 homes were sold in the United States last year, up from 437,000 homes one year earlier. Furthermore, the U.S. economy continues to rebound from the Great Recession. This means the number of homebuyers may increase nationwide over the next few years, leading to increased competition among homebuyers.

Ultimately, an informed homebuyer is better equipped to make the right decision about a residence and whether this house will fulfill his or her personal needs. With the right information at his or her disposal, a homebuyer should have no trouble insuring his or her residence as well.

Home insurance likely is a requirement if you want to obtain a mortgage. However, there are numerous factors that may impact your ability to receive a favorable premium for your home insurance, along with your ability to insure your house altogether.

The key factors that may impact your home insurance premium and/or your ability to insure your house include:

1. A Home's Location

Location represents an important consideration as you explore the housing market and will affect your home insurance premium.

For example, home insurance premiums will vary for homeowners in Florida and California, respectively, due to the fact the climates in these states create different risks for homeowners.

Sperling's Best Places ranks several Florida regions among the most likely to be affected by a major hurricane in the near future. Comparatively, wildfires are problematic in California, and the State of California reported these incidents have impacted more than 150,000 acres of land in the Golden State thus far in 2016.

Home insurance safeguards your house, personal property and more. Therefore, if you live in a region that is susceptible to hurricanes, wildfires or other risks, you may be forced to pay a higher premium to insure your house—or you may need to conduct a broad search to find an insurer for your residence.

bluehammer

2. Construction of Your Home

How your home is built might affect your home insurance premium. In fact, if your house consists of older materials, you may need to update your residence so you can insure it.

In addition, many factors may impact the home insurance premium for an older residence, including:

  • Outdated Wiring - Knob-and-tube wiring may be more exposed than wiring that is used in modern homes, creating additional fire dangers.
  • Galvanized Steel Pipes for Plumbing - Older homes often feature galvanized steel pipes that could rust, which may lead to leaks and flooding.
  • Storm-Sensitive Roof - An older roof will consist of older materials, which may make the roof more susceptible to hail, wind or other damage.

Take a close look at a residence's construction before you make your purchase decision. By doing so, you'll be able to determine whether home updates are needed, along with how the home's construction could affect your home insurance premium and/or your ability to insure the residence.

3. Home Replacement Costs

If you buy a home today, the value of your residence may change over the next month, year or decade.

The real estate market fluctuates constantly, and as such, what your home is worth now is likely to change soon. As a result, using the price that you paid for your house to determine the costs to replace your residence is insufficient.

Instead, you'll need a professional home appraisal to determine what it would cost to replace your residence. After this appraisal is completed, you'll be able to determine the proper home replacement costs and insure your house accordingly.

4. Flood Insurance

Believe it or not, a standard home insurance policy does not cover the damage associated with floods. On the other hand, you'll need flood insurance to supplement your home insurance if your house is located in a flood zone.

Also, it is important to note that your home does not necessarily need to be located in a flood zone to suffer damage due to a flood.

Even a few inches of water can cause long-lasting mold problems and flood damage in a home. If you purchase flood insurance - even if you're outside of a flood zone - you'll be protected if flooding occurs.

5. Potential Liability Hazards

Your home may have potential liability hazards that can raise your home insurance premium or make it difficult for you to insure your residence.

Some of the most common potential liability hazards include:

  • Animals - If you own a large dog or other types of animals, you'll need to account for each pet when you evaluate your home insurance options.
  • Swimming Pool - A swimming pool is a must for many homebuyers, but a pool could impact your home insurance premium.
  • Trampoline - Jumping on a trampoline offers a fun, exciting activity for kids and adults alike, but a trampoline may require you to pay more for your home insurance premium.

Consider your home insurance options as you search for the perfect residence, and you may be able to improve your chances of finding the ideal house in no time at all.

Want to estimate your home improvement costs before talking with a contractor? Claim your home for free with bluehammer to estimate costs, secure your home inventory and learn more about your home.

* THIS REPORT IS AN OPINION THAT MAY BE INACCURATE AND IS PROVIDED SOLELY AS AN INFORMATIONAL TOOL NOT DESIGNED TO PROVIDE DEFINITIVE ANSWERS. ALL ELEMENTS ARE OFFERED “AS IS” AND BLUEBOOK EXPRESSLY DISCLAIM ANY AND ALL WARRANTIES, REPRESENTATIONS, AND GUARANTEES OF ANY NATURE, EXPRESS, IMPLIED OR OTHERWISE, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO ANY IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABLITILY, NONINFRINGEMENT, TITLE, QUIET ENJOYMENT, ACCURACY, OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. IN NO EVENT SHALL BLUEBOOK (OR THEIR SUPPLIERS) BE LIABLE FOR ANY GENERAL, DIRECT, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL, INDIRECT OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES OF ANY KIND, OR ANY DAMAGES WHATSOEVER (INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION, THOSE RESULTING FROM USE OF THE PRODUCT, INCLUDING : (1) RELIANCE ON THE MATERIALS PRESENTED, (2) COSTS OF REPLACEMENT GOODS, (3) LOSS OF USE, DATA OR PROFITS, (4) DELAYS OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTIONS, (5) AND ANY THEORY OF LIABILITY, ARISING OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE USE OR PERFORMANCE OF INFORMATION) WHETHER OR NOT BLUEBOOK HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES.

Know what you should pay for your home improvement projects with bluehammer.Claim your home. It's free!

Popular


Is Your Furnace Affecting Your Indoor Air Quality?

The push to make our houses as energy-efficient as possible has, in some cases, led to unintended consequences. Because modern houses are less drafty due to tighter-fitting windows, doors and weather stripping, pollutants that were vented in the past are trapped inside. Most of the pollutants are relatively harmless, but some can be dangerous, and they all contribute to what some people call "sick house syndrome."

Condo Renovations: Making The Most Of Your Space

In real estate, nothing ever stays the same. In Toronto, the types of condo buyers are constantly changing, says real estate agent Cynthia Goodchild of Royal LePage Real Estate Services, Johnston and Daniel Division.

Is School Improvement Part of Your Ownership Strategy?

Neighborhoods with good schools often carry higher value for home buyers with children, so if you want to raise values in your neighborhood, supporting school improvement may be a valuable undertaking.

Installing a Ceiling Fan

Ceiling fans add to the decor of a room and are an energy efficient way to improve cooling when it's hot and heating when it's cold. For simple installations, installing your own ceiling fan is a breeze.

Renovations to Make Aging at Home Easier

As you or your loved one ages, your home may need to be adapted to accommodate lifestyle changes, accessibility and independence. Over 41% of individuals plan to stay in their own homes until the age of 81 or older. It is important to make gradual adaptations to your home as you age to allow for maneuverability. When remodeling to age at home, start early and plan ahead. It is cheaper to do small renovations one at a time than an entire home overhaul overnight.

9 Places to Shop Online For Furniture and Home Furnishings

These days, there isn't much we don't shop for online. But if you have been hesitant to buy your furniture and other home items with a few clicks instead of being able to walk into a store and see them in person, it might be time to rethink that strategy. With so many great sites that offer easy delivery (and returns) and tons of reviews that can give you confidence in your purchase, furnishing or updating your home online is easier than ever. We have curated a few of our favorite sites.

The Best Paint Colors For An Enduring Look In Your Home

Trends come and go. If you paint your walls the "provocative and thoughtful purple shade" of Ultra Violet, as Pantone, itself, calls it, you're probably gearing up to repaint them in whatever the color authority deems the "it" shade next year. If you'd rather pick a paint chip or two and keep your space the same for the long haul, you'll love these colors that endure.

6 Smart Updates To Make To Your Bathroom

The idea of renovating your bathroom can be overwhelming, but you don't have to knock down walls or gut the whole thing to make it feel new again. Making smart updates can get you closer to the look you want without the big budget, or the big hassle.

6 Ways To Create A More Serene Stress-Free Home

Your home is supposed to be your haven, the place where you can relax and wash away the stresses of the day. But, if your house is messy, cluttered, or designed in a way that opposes certain Feng Shui principles, it could actually be adding to your stress. Apply a few tips to make your home the serene spot it should be.

Replacing Your Kitchen Refrigerator

Refrigerators are the most important appliance in the Kitchen.

See More Articles