Home Insurance – Use Your 15 Minutes Wisely

15 Minutes can save you money now, but cost you thousands later. 

Oh wait, they don’t tell you that.

The price gun, the lizard, the mayhem guy.  We all have seen and heard them.  They interrupt our dinner or our favorite tunes driving home.  Their message is that price is all that matters when purchasing insurance.  They tell us to get it from the cheapest place we can.

Warning:  History Lesson Ahead. 

The Friendly Society for Mutual Insurance of Houses Against Fire (put THAT on a nametag), was founded in Charles Towne (now Charleston) S.C. in 1736.  The company was formed to help with, (Drumroll) you guessed it, fires.  That was what they needed protection against.  They pooled their money together to help when one of them suffered a loss.  Unfortunately, the 4 year old company was bankrupted by the Great Fire of 1740 which destroyed more than 300 buildings.

Ok, that’s enough history.  I prefer insurance speak, so let’s dive back in. 

I’m still amazed after 25+ years in this business that many think of home insurance as a commodity.  Like it’s a one size fits all purchase.  Many times, policies are purchased based on cost alone.  We get it.  We all want a good ‘deal’!  However, when it comes to insurance, it’s more important to make sure that you are getting a good ‘Value’.

I’m here to tell you that all home insurance policies are NOT the same.  In fact you would be hard pressed to find 2 that are identical.  I would dare to say it’s not possible.  Policies are issued as a template, and then companies tweak them with limits, exclusions and  endorsements.

How would you answer if I asked if you have ‘guaranteed’ replacement on  your home?  Many, who tell us yes, have extended, not guaranteed.  Do you have water-back of sewers and drains coverage?   Oh sure we have that.  Really?  How much?  Again, the assumption is that it’s just included. 

So what is my point?  Honest, I’m getting there.  You should be educated on what you are buying.  If you have an agent who doesn’t educate you, it’s time to find another agent!  Our job isn’t to cut out coverage and gain a new client because we are the cheapest.  Our job is to give you the information you need to make decisions that are best for you and your family. 

The bottom line folks, when you have a claim, do you want to use our checkbook or yours?  It’s really that simple.  My recommendation is that you make this choice at the time you BUY the insurance, not when you go to use it.  Now go dig out that insurance policy and see what you bought.