When it comes to homeowners insurance, you want to make sure to get enough coverage to accurately protect your home, but you also don’t want to have to pay more for it than you have to. Fortunately, homeowners insurance discounts are not only common, but widely available. An independent insurance agent can help you find the discounts that you best qualify for, but here’s an overview of a few of the most common and other helpful tidbits to start off.
What Kinds of Common Home Insurance Discounts Are Available?
When it comes to home insurance rates and potential discounts, it all comes down to how much of a risk factor can be shaved off of your property in order for the insurance company to cut you some slack on your premium. Insurance companies’ four major concerns for homes are fire damage, water damage, theft, and hail damage. A good rule of thumb to start with is if you’ve taken extra measures to prevent these perils, you’re more than likely eligible for a discount.
Here are a few of the most common home insurance discounts on the market:
- The new home discount: It may come as a surprise that newer homes are actually cheaper to insure because they come without plumbing or wiring issues found in older homes. As a result, if you purchase a brand new home, you’re likely to get a significant discount on your insurance policy.
- The companion policy discount: If you purchase your auto insurance through the same provider as you have your home insurance coverage, you’re likely to receive another significant discount, on both of your premiums.
- The burglar alarm discount: Theft is a huge concern for insurance companies. If you install a burglar alarm or any kind of security system on your home, you can greatly reduce your risk of break-ins and theft. As a result, your insurance company will likely reward you with a discount.
- The gated community discount: This one also relates to the risk of theft. Living in a gated community will obviously reduce that risk, and insurance companies observe that. If you’re fortunate enough to live in a more secure community, you’re more than likely also fortunate enough to receive a break on your home insurance premium.
- The fire extinguisher discount: Insurance companies’ number one concern when it comes to homes is fire damage. Any measures you take to reduce your risk of fire damage are likely to also reduce your home insurance premium. This includes purchasing a fire extinguisher.
- The sprinkler discount: A sprinkler system is similar to the previous example, but is also a much more effective means of preventing fire damage. It therefore comes with the potential for receiving a much more significant discount.
- The no-loss history discount: Insurance companies have access to your home’s history of insurance claims. If you purchase a home with no claims history, you might just receive a discount on your home insurance premium.
- The hail-resistant roof discount: This one only applies if you live in an area that’s prone to hailstorms. If you’ve upgraded your roof to hail-resistant shingles, your insurance company is likely to reward you with a significant discount.
- The pool discount: This one is very specific. If you live in an area far away from all fire departments and you install a pool in your yard, your insurance company is likely to offer you a discount because the fire company now has a water source to draw from in the event of a fire.
Keep in mind that this is only a list of common home insurance discounts available on the market, and is not extensive. These discounts also may not apply to everyone in each situation, and the availability and amount of the discount offered will vary heavily by the insurance company. Your independent insurance agent can provide you with more information.
How Much Are These Common Discounts Actually Worth?
It’s hard or even virtually impossible to offer exact dollar amounts for these discounts without knowing which specific insurance company and policy is in question. For starters, not every insurance company offers the exact same discounts, or the exact same discount amounts on their premiums. It’s all highly subjective to your unique situation, but working with an independent insurance agent can seriously increase your chances of finding the best discounts.
That being said, for the more significant discounts such as the new home discount, the companion policy discount, the sprinkler system discount, and the hail-resistant roof discount, you’re likely to see a break of 10% to 15% or possibly even more on your premium. Certain discounts are less significant, such as the gated community discount or burglar alarm discount, where you might only knock 2% to 5% off your premium. Still, every bit helps.
Which Carriers Offer the Most Homeowners Insurance Discounts?
While many homeowners insurance discounts exist, there’s no guarantee that one specific carrier will offer all or even some of them. Discounts are highly subjective to the area you live in as well as a number of other factors. While working with an independent insurance agent is by far the best way to get set up with a policy that has the best possible discount for you, here are a handful of well-known homeowners insurance companies known to offer generous discounts:
- USAA: Known for offering bundling discounts, protective device credits (i.e., if you install security alarms, etc., in your home), claims-free discounts and more, USAA is one of the top-rated homeowners insurance companies of 2020.
- Metlife: Offering the bundling discount and protective device/safety discount as well as employer group discounts in certain scenarios, Metlife is another carrier who ranks among the top when it comes to homeowners insurance.
- Allstate: Their claims-free discount offers customers up to a 20% break on their premium if switching to Allstate from another carrier without a recent claim. Allstate also offers welcome and loyalty discounts of up to 10%. Additionally, retired seniors aged 55 and over are eligible for their own discount.
- Farmers: Known for offering not only the claims-free discount but also a claims forgiveness discounts that allows customers to not experience an increase in their premium if they remain claims-free for five years, Farmers consistently ranks among the top carriers for coverage options and discounts.
One of the top perks of working with an independent insurance agent is that they do all the hunting around for you. They’ll hook you up with a policy from a carrier that not only caters to your coverage needs, but that also gives you the best rate, including any sweet discounts you’re eligible for.
What Else Can Help You Save on Your Homeowners Premium?
Besides qualifying for a traditional homeowners insurance discount, there are other ways to save money on your premium. So never fear if you don’t think you’re eligible for one of the previously mentioned common discounts, because there are plenty of actions you can take as a homeowner to help you start shelling out less dough to protect your happy place.
Homeowners can take the following measures to save money on their premium:
- Install home safety features: Since fires are one of the most common perils affecting homes, installing devices such as a sprinkler system or fire extinguisher can help you reduce your premium. Additionally, security systems or burglar alarms of any kind greatly help to reduce the risk of theft, which your insurance company is likely to reward you for by reducing your premium in return.
- Upgrade your home: One of the best upgrades you can make to your home for both your benefit and that of your bank account’s is to update/replace your roof. Windstorm and hail damage are among the most common perils affecting homeowners, and the sturdier your roof, the less likely Mother Nature is to cause extensive damage to the interior of your home. Not up for taking on a roofing project? Slap a fresh paint of coat on your home — it’s attractive to both your neighborhood and your insurance company.
- Pay your premium in full: A simple way to save money on your homeowners insurance is to pay for an entire year’s worth of premiums all at once. If you opt to make monthly premium payments, your insurance company likely will tack on a bit of an extra fee in order to process all the additional checks. Paying up front with one lump sum can alleviate this extra cost to your premium.
Still have more questions about homeowners insurance discounts or how to save money on your premium in other ways? An independent insurance agent can help to demystify a ton of available options for you, and still get you set up with all the proper coverage you need.
Benefits of an Independent Insurance Agent
Independent insurance agents have access to multiple insurance companies, ultimately finding you the best coverage, accessibility, and competitive pricing while working for you. Find an independent insurance agent in your community here.
TrustedChoice.com Article | Reviewed by Paul Martin
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