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THE BASICS OF HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE

Owning a home requires a tremendous investment of money, time and energy. Homeowners insurance is designed to protect that investment by insuring the actual structure or structures and the personal possessions in and around them, and by providing liability protection for the residents. Homeowners insurance will protect you and your family from enormous loss in the event of damage or destruction to your home and property.

Covered Losses

A Homeowners policy will protect, up to the policy limit, against most losses such as fire, wind, theft, vandalism etc. Events such as floods, earthquakes and wars, are excluded from all homeowners insurance policies and you should consider purchasing separate policies to cover against such catastrophes.

Replacement Cost

Some basic policies will replace or repair your home and property for the actual cash value. This is defined as the replacement cost minus depreciation. However, we always suggest that you insure for the replacement cost, i.e. the cost to rebuild the home — which is considerably more than its actual cash value.

Coverage For Your Personal Belongings

Homeowners insurance also covers against the loss of your personal possessions, up to certain limits. For example, your furniture and appliances would be covered, as well as clothing, jewelry, tools — anything of value, even if it is lost or destroyed away from your home. However, unless you schedule each item of value separately it is only covered up to certain limits (usually a max amount of $1,500 per item). Additional coverage for possessions that may be more valuable than those limits, are available and are strongly recommended.
It is advisable to document your personal belongings prior to a possible disaster. A written list, photographs or even a videotaped walkthrough of your house can be helpful if you have to make a claim.

Liability Protection

Homeowners insurance also covers the insured with a certain amount of liability protection. If someone is injured on your property, or suffers property damage and you are found to be responsible, your insurance, up to certain limits, will pay your defense fees and any awards or expenses you may owe the injured party. If you own property or have other significant assets to protect, you may want to consider purchasing an umbrella policy for extended liability coverage.

Lowering your Premium

The cost of homeowners insurance depends on a number of factors. Premiums are based on the value, location, and age of the home. Installing a home security system, smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, & deadbolt locks will significantly lower your premium. In addition, raising the deductible (the portion of the claim that is not covered) will also lower your rate considerably. Stonebrook Insurance Agency has extensive areas in all areas of Homeowners Insurance. Our goal is to get you the best possible coverage at the cheapest rate available. Call or email us today for a free no obligation quote.