If you’re like most homeowners, you’re probably always on the lookout for ways to lower your homeowners insurance premium. One of your best options is to take steps to harden your home against the events that can cause damage. Many insurance companies offer premium discounts for installing these three home protection products.
Home security system
An easy way to lower your homeowners insurance premium is with a home security system. The biggest price reductions are often saved for security systems that have motion sensors and cameras. Plus, some insurance companies only offer discounts for central alarm systems.
Security systems with these features help deter possible intruders who often look for an easier target once they realize a home is protected. In the event that there is an incident, law enforcement can use the camera’s footage to help find the culprits and reclaim stolen items.
Home security systems may cost anywhere from $199 to $399 for a package or kit, and you should expect to pay anywhere from $25 to $50 per month for monitoring. Many systems are designed to be self-installed, but if you are getting installation, there may be an additional installation fee. The good news is that there are security systems that fit into just about any budget.
Water and climate sensors
If you’ve ever had your pipes burst or returned home to a flooded basement, you know how serious water damage can be. Water issues are common, too: homes are two times more likely to experience water damage than fire and theft combined.
Water and climate sensors monitor temperature and humidity, alerting your smartphone when water is detected. They’re easy to install, too. Just place them on a wall or on the ground in areas that might be prone to leaks.
These sensors can alert you to water damage before it gets out of hand, sparing your home from expensive damage and decreasing the chance of filing claims. The fewer claims you have, the cheaper your homeowners insurance is.
Sensors can cost anywhere from $29.99 to $80 depending on the manufacturer and model. Do your homework and read customer reviews about sensors to make sure that you choose a reliable option that will not fail in the event of water intrusion.
Third nail installation
The number one way to save big bucks on homeowners insurance in Florida is through wind mitigation credits. The more wind resistant your home is, the lower your premium will be.
If your home was built before 2002, then your roof may need a little love to make sure it can withstand hurricane winds. Folks with older homes often benefit from working with a licensed general contractor that specializes in truss mitigation and hurricane retrofits in Florida. If your roof truss has “toe nails,” they can simply add a third nail to help your home qualify for the “clips” discount noted in your wind mitigation inspection.
While that third nail might not seem like much, it can make a big difference in how much you pay for homeowners insurance. You can save 20 to 50 percent on your total premium by upgrading your roof-to-wall attachment from toe nails to clips.
Why insurance companies give discounts for these products
Home insurance companies are in the business of providing financial protection against certain risks homeowners face. When a homeowner can reduce the risk, the insurance carrier views that homeowner favorably and often offers a discount for hardening the home against perils.
While you may not think these products offer significant protection, there is evidence that suggests otherwise:
- Security company ADT says surveillance cameras deter crime , cutting criminal activity in one city by 50 percent.
- The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) claims that just one inch of water can lead to $25,000 or more in damages to your home.
When you reduce the risk of a loss, you reduce the chance your insurance company will have to pay a claim. So insurers encourage good risk management by offering a financial incentive (i.e., a premium discount).
Keep in mind that a claim doesn’t need to involve a natural disaster to be catastrophic to your home. Just a small incident can lead to a big claim.
For example, a pipe bursting in your kitchen or bathroom can easily produce an inch of water. And it’s not just the floor that might suffer water damage. Your floors, cabinets, appliances, even your foundation could feel the effects. That’s why you should look into getting these products. You may have to shell out a few bucks, but security systems, water sensors, and hurricane clips usually pay for themselves in lower home insurance costs.
To learn more about home insurance and how you might save on your costs, give us a call at 855-717-0022 or start your application.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in March 2017. It has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.