Making sure you are not spending more than necessary is part of any good financial plan. These strategies recommended by the Wisconsin Office of the Commissioner of Insurance (OCI) will help you save money on your insurance premiums.
It is important to maintain control of your budget and for many their insurance premiums are a big part of their budget.
- Make sure you are receiving all the discounts to which you are entitled. Discounts are typically given to people who have more than one policy with the same insurer; have security or safety systems, such as smoke detectors, deadbolts and fire alarms; are 55 or older and retired; or live in homes located in eligible homeowner’s associations. Some insurers even offer discounts if all residents of the home are nonsmokers.
- Consider increasing your deductible. If your deductible is $250, raising it to $500 should decrease your premiums. Raise it to $1,000 and you could save even more. Just two caveats: 1) make sure you can pay the higher deductible if disaster strikes; and 2) check with your lender as some home loans have a clause that specifies a maximum property insurance deductible.
- Make home improvements. Upgrading your electrical, plumbing and heating systems could improve the safety of your home and, therefore, reduce your premiums. Plus, certain energy saving improvements may be eligible for federal tax credits. Repair or replace your older roof since insurance policies do not cover losses resulting from wear and tear. Plus a newer roof is more likely to protect your home from storm damage.
- Don’t over insure. If you drive an older, less expensive vehicle, consider eliminating collision and/or comprehensive coverage.
- Maintain a good credit history. Insurance companies are increasingly using credit information to price homeowner’s insurance policies. Protect your credit standing by paying bills on time and keeping your credit balances low. Check your credit report on a regular basis and have errors corrected promptly.
It is important to maintain control of your budget and insurance premiums are a big part of most people’s budgets. Monitoring them and doing what you can to keep them as low as possible gives you money to spend on other important things.
You may ask questions in the comments or contact me privately Tim Barton, ChFC