Twelve Ways to Lower Your Homeowner's Insurance Costs

The price you pay for your homeowner's insurance can vary by hundreds of dollars, depending on the insurance company you buy your policy from. Here are some things to consider when buying homeowners insurance.

  1. Shop around - It'll take some time, but could save you a good sum of money.
  2. Raise your deductible - The higher your deductible, the more money you can save on your premiums.
  3. Don’t confuse what you paid for your house with rebuilding costs - The land under your house isn't at risk from theft, windstorm, fire and the other perils covered in your homeowner's policy. So don't include its value in deciding how much homeowners insurance to buy
  4. Buy your home and auto policies from the same insurer - Some companies that sell homeowners, auto and liability coverage will take 5 to 15 percent off your premium if you buy two or more policies from them.
  5. Make your home more disaster-resistant - Find out from your insurance agent or company representative what steps you can take to make your home more resistant to windstorms and other natural disasters.
  6. Improve your home security - You can usually get discounts of 5 to 20 percent for smoke detectors, burglar alarms, dead-bolt locks, a sophisticated sprinkler system, and fire alarms.
  7. Seek out other discounts - For example, since retired people stay at home more than working people they are less likely to be burglarized and may spot fires sooner, too.
  8. Maintain a good credit record - Establishing a solid credit history can cut your insurance costs.
  9. Stay with the same insurer - If you've kept your coverage with a company for several years, you may receive a special discount for being a long-term policyholder.
  10. Review the limits in your policy and the value of your possessions at least once a year - You don't want to spend money for coverage you don't need.
  11. Look for private insurance if you are in a government plan - You may find that there are steps you can take that would allow you to buy insurance at a lower price in the private market.
  12. When you’re buying a home, consider the cost of homeowners insurance - Check the CLUE (Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange) report of the home you are thinking of buying. These reports contain the insurance claim history of the property and can help you judge some of the problems the house may have.

The Insurance Information Institute covers these items in this article.