September 5, 2019

Best Homeowner's Insurance


Shopping for home insurance is a big decision. Here's a list of the top insurance companies, from cheapest rates to best coverage.

© CreditDonkey

Best Overall: Allstate

Allstate offers some of the best discounts in the business. The company makes insurance easy to obtain while catering to first-time homebuyers, seniors and home sharers.

They are on the cutting edge of optimizing their customers' coverages, utilizing advances in technology to customize products and enhance their value.

Allstate is a winner or an honorable mention in 6 of the 13 categories on our Top Home Insurance Companies list.

Honorable Mentions

Progressive

  • Among the first to offer products and services that meet the changing times

  • Makes it easy to obtain home insurance, especially for first-time buyers

  • Winner or honorable mention in 4 of our 13 best categories

State Farm

  • Known for competitive rates

  • Consistently rates high for financial stability and customer satisfaction

  • Among the best in home insurance for older homes and first-time homebuyers

Best for Competitive Rates: Chubb

Competitive rates means a good price for the coverages provided. You could buy the cheapest home insurance, but chances are the coverage is going to be very limited.

Chubb premium discounts that deliver considerable savings. But the company also has the most comprehensive protection for the price. Its home insurance policies include services not offered by many insurers like:

  • Home assessment service

  • Complimentary infrared home scan of walls and ceilings to look for leaks, faulty electrical connections, missing insulation, etc.

  • Complimentary wildfire defense services to keep your home safe before and during a wildfire

Honorable Mentions

State Farm

  • Among the cheapest rates throughout the U.S.

  • Good number of discounts to lower price even more

  • Coverage protects against a good number of weather, non-weather and accidental direct physical losses

Erie Insurance Group

  • Customize your coverage to what you want

  • 100% guaranteed replacement cost

  • Extensive coverage with fewer exclusions than the competition

Best for Discounts: Allstate

Home insurance companies offer discounts to help its customers lower their insurance costs. These savings reward policyholders for helping to minimize the loss risk to their property.

Allstate stands alone offers a combination of standard industry discounts, like protective device discounts, and easy to obtain ones, like:

  • 25% multi-policy discount
  • 10% welcome and loyalty discount for new and current customers
  • 5% discount for setting up automatic payments
  • 5% for recent homebuyer or for a newly constructed home

Additional discounts are available for 55 and retired homeowners, smoke-free homes, and homes with hail resistant roofs or storm shutters.

Allstate offers a 20% discount for customers without recent home insurance claims who switch from a different insurer.

Honorable Mentions

Esurance

  • Household level discounts for new home, do-it-yourself home inspection, home safety features, smoke-free, hail resistant roof, storm shutters and claim-free

  • Policy level discounts for multi-policies, new customer, loyal customer, paying your premium on time and future effective date

Liberty Mutual

  • Easy-to-get savings, like a paperless discount, automated payment discount, newly purchased home discount and early shopper discount

  • Offers military discount, new roof discount, protective devices discount and insured to value discount

Highest Rated: Amica

The best home insurance providers are the ones who score the highest in all aspects of financial strength and service.

Amica consistently receives a superior rating for its financial strength and the highest possible customer satisfaction score.

Its high rating reflects its commitment to foster lasting relationships with its customers. It is among the home insurers with the fewest customer complaints.

Amica has standard and extended coverage offerings, so homeowners can customize a policy that meets their needs. Numerous policy and safety discounts add to their customers' satisfaction.

AM Best, J.D. Power and other insurance rating agencies rank home insurers based on factors such as:
  • Financial performance
  • Ability to pay claims
  • Response time to customers' inquiries
  • How satisfied customers are with customer service
  • The effectiveness of the claim process

Honorable Mentions

USAA

  • Exclusive to active and retired military personnel only

  • A++ financial strength rating

  • 5 out of 5 customer satisfaction score

State Farm

  • A++ financial strength rating

  • 3 out of 5 customer satisfaction score

Easiest to Obtain: Allstate

The best home insurance providers use technology to make their homeowners insurance easy to obtain and manage.

With Allstate, you can get a personalized home insurance quote from its website or its mobile app.

Existing customers can access their policy online to make a payment, access policy forms and documents, or submit policy updates.

You can also file a claim or review its status from your online account. Or use mobile app or 24/7 toll-free phone number for claims service.

Allstate has local offices throughout the United States. Use the agent search tool on the website to find representatives by zip code or city and state.

Customer service by phone is available 24/7. You can also send an e-mail, tweet, or regular postal mail correspondence.

Honorable Mentions

GEICO

  • Online homeowners insurance quote from its website or mobile app

  • Local GEICO insurance agents in offices throughout the United States

  • Customer service by phone 7 days a week, from early morning to late evening to accommodate all time zones

  • Existing customers can access their policy online to make a payment, file a claim, review their coverage, or submit policy updates

Progressive

  • Lets you compare home insurance quotes and coverages with other home insurers

  • 24/7 sales and customer service toll-free phone number as well as online chat and e-mail

  • Online account or mobile app for managing your account, making a payment, viewing coverages and discounts, filing a claim and other services

Best for Service: Amica

Service encompasses all types of contact with a home insurance company. It might be a customer service representative, an agent, or a claims service representative.

Amica is known for its all-around quality service. Its vision statement promises to "create peace of mind and build enduring relationships."

All interactions with the company are tops in terms of responsiveness and a quick resolution to the issue at hand.

Amica is a mutual company, which means it is owned by its policyholders. It does not use agents to sell its products. All contact comes through a knowledgeable customer service representatives. This ensures all customers consistently receive a high level of service.

Honorable Mentions

Erie Insurance Group

  • 90% of its customers remain with them year after year

  • Founded on a culture of service

  • Local agents, field offices, customer care team and 24/7 support

USAA

  • Among the highest in consumer and insurance ratings for customer service and claim service

  • Service catered to situations faced by active and retired military members and their families

  • 24/7 virtual agent

Best for First-Time Buyers: Allstate

The best home insurance companies make the introduction to home ownership less stressful. They provide new homebuyers with easy to read information to make educated decisions.

Allstate provides a wealth of resources for first-time homebuyers on its website. The information covers how to:

  • Choose a house
  • Pay for it
  • Protect your investment

Using the website's two interactive tools, new homebuyers can predict their risks and coverage needs. They learn which factors impact the cost of their home insurance and the common and costly claims in their neighborhood.

Honorable Mentions

Progressive

  • Progressive Life Lanes provides expert guidance, tips and tools on all sorts of household topics

  • A company website with a guide to home insurance for the first-time homebuyer

  • Comprehensive homeowners insurance articles for beginners

State Farm

  • Offers information on navigating the process of buying a home for the first time

  • Homeowners insurance web page includes helpful Q&As and searchable articles on how to buy homeowners insurance

Best for Military Members and Veterans: (TIE) USAA and AFI

The best home insurance companies offer a comprehensive policy to active and retired military personnel that covers the risks their homes may face. They also have discounts to help them save while on active duty or when retired.

  • USAA exclusively insures the homes of active and retired military members and their families. Its homeowners policy caters to the military, such as providing coverage for uniforms damaged in a loss.

    Home-sharing coverage is included for renting out your home or a room while deployed.

    USAA also offers a 10% discount for insuring both your home and auto with them.

  • Armed Forces Insurance (AFI) provides home insurance to all active and retired members of the U.S. military branches and their families. Its comprehensive homeowners insurance package protects the dwelling, personal property and personal liability.

    Additional coverage options allow for policy customization to meet your specific coverage needs.

Honorable Mention

GEICO

  • Has a separate military center staffed by veterans who sell and service military homeowners insurance policies

  • Provides a military discount up to 15%

  • Has an emergency deployment discount

Best for Seniors-AARP Homeowners from Hartford

The best home insurance companies for seniors offer flexible policies that can be customized to meet changing needs. They offer specific senior discounts, loyalty discounts, or referral discounts to longtime customers.

AARP has partnered with The Hartford to offer a homeowners insurance program for its age 50 and older members. The policy includes benefits and services especially for AARP members like a retiree credit discount and lifetime renewability.

This allows seniors to age in place without worrying about losing coverage due to the number of homeowners claims they submit.

Honorable Mentions

Allstate

  • Offers a senior/retired discount

  • Customized policies to cover homes, condos, townhouses and mobile homes

American Family

  • Personalized coverage assistant tool helps seniors buy the coverage they need

  • Senior living insurance for coverage in assisted living facilities and nursing homes

Best for Older Homes: Chubb

Because of their age, older houses may be more at risk for damage during a storm or wiring and plumbing problems. Historic homes may need special building materials or decorative features.

Chubb insures older homes, historic homes and high value homes. Its dwelling coverage repairs or rebuilds the home's structure to its original condition, even if the cost exceeds the policy's limit.

Unlike other home insurers that use actual cash value to lower their risk, Chubb's home policies provide extended replacement cost coverage.

The company also offers a complimentary risk consultant to document your home's architecture and details to ensure they are restored to their original design after a loss.

Honorable Mentions

Foremost Insurance Group

  • The member of the Farmers Insurance Group of Companies offers a specialty homeowners policy

  • Option of extended replacement cost

  • Add-on coverages so you can design a policy that's right for your older home

State Farm

  • Covers homes of all ages, even more than 100 years old

  • Sells its standard homeowners policy so you're not paying extra due to your home's age

  • Ample home insurance discounts to lower your rate

Best for Condos and Townhouses: MetLife

A good condo policy provides protection for everything within the walls of the residence. It also addresses any gaps between your responsibility as a condo owner and that of the condo association's insurance policy.

MetLife provides customized condo insurance policies so you can buy the protection that meets your needs.

Its policies feature replacement cost coverage and loss assessment protection to cover assessments from your condo association.

All condo policies include identity protection services and worldwide personal belongings coverage. Numerous discounts are available to lower the cost of your condo insurance.

Honorable Mentions

Farmers

  • Personalized coverage options to meet your needs and budget

  • Declining deductibles

  • Numerous discounts offer more savings opportunities

Nationwide

  • Offers basic and optional condo coverages so you can design a policy to fit your needs

  • Wide array of condo insurance discounts

Best for Home Sharing: Progressive

Neither standard homeowners policies nor rental service agreements cover home sharing. That means owners who rent their living spaces through online vacation and rental marketplaces require insurance to fill coverage gaps in their policy.

The best home insurance companies for home sharing give homeowners pay-per-use coverage when hosting short-term rentals.

Progressive partners with Slice to provide home share coverage when it is needed. Homeowners select the dates they need the coverage and the protection goes in force the same day.

The cost is minimal, averaging $8 a night, and most of the coverages do not have a deductible.

Progressive's home share policy features 18 additional coverages specific to home sharing. Among them are excess use of utilities, liquor liability coverage, infestation coverage and identity theft protection.

Honorable Mentions

Allstate

  • Covers theft and personal property damage

  • Protection up to $10,000 per rental host period

  • Available as an endorsement to an Allstate homeowners or condo policy

Proper Insurance

  • Replaces your homeowners policy with an all-inclusive policy that includes short-term rental insurance for home sharing

  • Offered in all 50 states

  • Underwritten by Lloyd's of London

Best for Green Homes: Farmers

The best home insurance companies for green homes offer reduced rates and discounts to homeowners who practice sustainable building practices.

Farmers Insurance offers an eco-rebuild endorsement to its homeowners policy. The option kicks in when a home needs to be rebuilt after a total loss.

The endorsement provides an additional $25,000 for the use of green materials and appliances that meet Energy Star requirements. It also reimburses costs for recycling debris and waste instead of disposing it in a landfill.

If the home uses an alternative energy source, the endorsement reimburses the homeowner for the power lost because of the loss.

Honorable Mentions

Travelers Insurance

  • 5% discount if home is green certified by the LEED organization

  • Homeowners policy option includes rebuilding a non-green home with green materials after a loss

The Hartford

  • Optional green rebuilding coverage expands coverage 10% so you can use green materials and processes or upgrade to Energy Star appliances

  • Green rebuilding option available on all homeowners plans

  • Exclusive home insurance provider to AARP members

Best for Manufactured or Mobile Homes: Allstate

Mobile homes are more at risk for certain disasters, like hurricanes and tornadoes. Coverage for these risks are not always included in a mobile home policy.

Allstate covers manufactured and mobile homes like traditional homes. It offers standard home insurance coverage, modified to the special considerations of a manufactured home.

Their mobile home insurance includes its standard lineup of home insurance discounts like:

  • An original owner discount
  • A 55 and retired discount
  • A multi-policy discount
  • Protective device discounts

Allstate offers optional coverages, like yard and garden insurance or coverage for expensive sports equipment or musical instruments.

Honorable Mentions

American Family Insurance

  • Builds a "personally tailored" mobile or manufactured home insurance policy

  • Offers extra protection coverages, like a matching siding endorsement, other structures coverage and trip collision

  • Wide array of discounts

Progressive

  • Specialized protection includes the mobile home plus additions, like porches and carports

  • Replacement cost coverage to protect against depreciation

  • Range of discounts and deductible options

Home Insurance Basics

© CreditDonkey

Home insurance coverage varies by policy and company. The 5 main coverages to look for in a home insurance policy are:

  1. Dwelling
    This covers your home's infrastructure, including structures attached to your home, such as a garage.

  2. Other Structures
    This is coverage for structures not attached to your home. Some examples are detached garages, sheds, fences, inground swimming pool, and pool houses.

  3. Personal Property
    This coverage applies to personal possessions.

  4. Liability
    This protects you financially from lawsuits and medical expenses of those hurt on your property. It also covers damage caused to another person's property by those covered under your policy.

  5. Additional Living Expenses
    This coverage pays for expenses outside your normal living expenses if you have to live elsewhere due to a loss to your home.

    Some coverage examples are hotel and restaurant bills. It also provides loss of use coverage if you rented your home prior to the loss.

Exclusions and Perils

The best home insurance policy includes protection for all these coverages with minimal exclusions.

An exclusion means coverage is not provided under the policy. For example, most homeowner's policies do not cover floods and earthquakes. A homeowner has to buy a separate policy for each of these coverages.

Besides exclusions, a homeowner's policy only pays for certain losses, called perils. Policies cover perils in two ways:

  1. Named Perils: The policy specifically lists the perils that are covered.
  2. Open Perils: The policy covers all perils unless an exclusion is specifically listed.

Open perils policies typically have better coverage than named perils policies. Plus, most or all of the named perils are already likely covered.

For the best coverage, look for policies that cover:

  • Fire and smoke
  • Lightning strikes
  • Wind damage
  • Hail
  • Weight of snow or ice damage
  • Vandalism and theft
  • Explosions
  • Volcanic eruption damage
  • Falling objects, such as tree limbs
  • Damage from rioting or civil unrest
  • Damage from vehicles or aircraft
  • Accidental water damage
  • Freezing pipes
  • Debris removal
  • Damage to trees and shrubs
  • Identity theft costs

Buying the right coverages for your home is essential for financial security. Without good coverage, you could end up paying hundreds of thousands of dollars if a disaster strikes.

The best property and casualty insurers also offer endorsements, riders, or supplemental coverages to meet your specific needs. These specialized options are added to your homeowner's policy.

Some examples are:

  • Inflation guard so your policy keeps pace with inflation
  • Equipment breakdown coverage to cover items not covered under your homeowner's policy

Finding the Best Price for Home Insurance

© CreditDonkey

Buying home insurance based on price alone can cost you significantly if you make a claim. Remember, the price of your home insurance will depend on how much coverage you choose.

Compare quotes to find the best price for the coverages you need. Look at what is included and excluded in the coverage when evaluating quotes.

Some home insurance companies may charge more than others for the same coverage amounts. Shopping around and getting multiple quotes can pay off.

When comparing quotes, you have to evaluate 5 key things:

  1. Coverage amount options
  2. Limits placed on coverages
  3. Deductible options
  4. How the policy pays out
  5. Discounts

Let's take a look at each one individually to see how they affect the price of a home insurance policy.

Coverage Amount Options

All five main coverages of home insurance have separate coverage amount options. The extent of those options depends on the home insurance carrier.

Dwelling Coverage
You should choose a coverage amount based on how much it will cost to rebuild your home.

Most home insurance companies have software to estimate a home's replacement cost.

However, if your home has special features or if recent improvements were made, you may want to increase your dwelling coverage accordingly.

This coverage costs more than the others. But it's not something you want to reduce in order to save money. Having enough dwelling insurance to rebuild your entire home after a complete loss saves you potential out-of-pocket costs during a claim.

Other Structures Coverage
Usually, insurance companies set this coverage amount at 10% to 20% of your dwelling coverage. If you need more, you can purchase an endorsement for the additional coverage. The endorsement becomes part of your homeowner's policy.

You can save money on your other structures coverage if:

  • The structures on your property are old or not used, so there's no need to replace them if they're damaged in a loss
  • You don't have other structures on your property

Personal Property Coverage
Many home insurers provide personal property protection that is 50% to 70% of your dwelling coverage. But the best way to find out if this amount is enough is to make a home inventory.

A home inventory documents everything you own and its value. Be sure to include anything you may have in storage outside the home.

This list also comes in handy when filing a claim after a loss. Here are some things to include:

  • Furniture
  • Appliances
  • Tableware
  • Cookware
  • Musical instruments
  • Sporting and exercise equipment
  • Home d├ęcor
  • Clothing
  • Jewelry
  • Electronics
  • Collectibles

The total of your home inventory is how much you should buy in personal property coverage.

If your personal property is not of much value, you can save money by choosing a lower coverage amount.

Smartphone apps make creating a home inventory much easier. But be sure to include:
  • Photos of each item
  • Make and model numbers
  • Serial number, if applicable
  • When and where it was purchased
  • The cost at time of purchase
  • Personal Liability Coverage
    You can choose your coverage amount with most home insurance carriers. Options usually range from $100,000 to $1 million.

    The amount of personal liability coverage you buy should be more than the worth of your assets, including:

    • Any property you own
    • The amount of money you have in the bank
    • Investment funds
    • Retirement funds

    Being adequately protected is more important than cost when it comes to personal liability coverage. Without enough coverage, one lawsuit could leave you paying out-of-pocket for the rest of your life.

    Additional Living Expenses Coverage
    Be sure your additional living expense coverage is enough to accommodate any special needs you may have living your daily life away from your home base.

    Some insurance providers calculate this coverage as 20% of your dwelling coverage. Others may calculate it based on your personal property coverage. Find out which method the insurer uses to calculate this coverage and make sure it's the best one for your situation.

    Additional living expense coverage doesn't sound that important. But it may turn out to be a lifesaver if needed. Buy enough protection to avoid spending extra money on additional living expenses while your home is being repaired after a claim.

    Limits Placed on Coverages

    The amount of insurance you buy for each of the five main coverages is the most the home insurance company will pay in the event of a loss.

    But some insurance companies also place limits on certain perils or personal property items. A policy with a lot of limitations may cost less, but you have to pay more out-of-pocket if a loss occurs.

    Some common limits are:

    • A policy that only pays a certain percentage of a loss. For example, some insurers put a limit on its hurricane windstorm coverage.

    • A policy that limits personal property coverage on jewelry, electronics, collectibles, etc. For example, some policies limit the amount of personal property coverage for electronics to $500.

    Deductible Options

    A deductible is the amount you must pay first before the insurance company pays out on a loss.

    Usually, a home insurance policy has one deductible for all coverages. You have the option of choosing a policy deductible that ranges from a low of $500 to a high of $2,000.

    But some policies have deductibles for certain perils. For example, it's common for a policy to have 2%, 3%, or 5% deductible options for hurricane windstorms.

    For the best home insurance that meets your budget, choose a deductible amount that you are financially comfortable paying when a loss occurs.

    A policy with a high deductible will lower the cost of your insurance. But that means you have to pay more out-of-pocket each time a loss occurs.

    And if your deductible is more than the cost of the loss, you pay for the loss on your own.

    How the Policy Pays Out

    A home policy includes a method for calculating the payout for a loss. There are 3 coverage types. Keep reading to learn about each of them.

    Actual Cash Value
    The insurer will deduct depreciation from the current market value of anything on the claim.

    Replacement Cost
    The insurer uses the current cost of items to calculate how much it will pay to repair, rebuild, or replace your home and personal property.

    Extended Value
    Extended value method pays beyond the current cost of items to allow for market increases due to shortages or supply and demand.

    Choosing the actual cash value method will lower the cost of your homeowner's insurance. But it means you will not get full value for your dwelling and personal property. Be prepared to pay more out-of-pocket if you have a loss.

    Discounts

    Look for homeowner's insurance companies that offer discounts to lower the cost of your policy. Some common home insurance discounts include:

    • New home discount for newly constructed homes

    • Multi-policy discount for having more than one insurance policy with the same insurer

    • Security system discount for installing burglar alarms, deadbolts on doors, or a monitored security system in your home

    • Fire safety discount for installing smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, a sprinkler system, or a monitored fire alarm system in your home

    Some property and casualty insurance companies go above and beyond by offering discounts for:

    • Non-smokers

    • Living in a gated community

    • Living in a homeowners association (HOA) community

    • Owning a backup power generator

    • Installing sensors that detect natural gas and water leaks

    • Doing home improvement projects such as installing a new roof, new plumbing, new wiring, or a new air conditioning system

    • Having an impact resistant roof discount

    • Being retired

    • Paying your insurance premium in full

    Besides a wealth of discounts, the best home insurance companies provide customer loyalty discounts and claims-free discounts.

    Look for insurers that offer a wide array of discounts. You can save a bundle of money on your home insurance with them.

    Choosing the Best Home Insurance Company

    © CreditDonkey

    The best home insurance companies are much more than the best in coverage, price, and service. They also have these 3 key qualities:

    Financial Stability
    Financial health ratings for insurance companies range from A++ for the cream of the crop to D for poor. They should be seriously taken into consideration when choosing your company. Make sure your home insurer is financially secure enough to cover huge claim losses from disasters.

    The financial stability of a home insurance company is carefully watched by insurance industry rating companies that make sure insurers are meeting performance standards for their industry. They include AM Best, Standard & Poor's, Fitch Ratings, Weiss Ratings, and Moody's Investor Services.

    Home insurance companies that consistently receive above average ratings (A++ or A+) from AM Best are:

    • Chubb (A++)
    • Geico (A++)
    • Travelers (A++)
    • USAA (A++)
    • Allstate (A+)
    • Amica (A+)
    • Erie (A+)
    • Nationwide (A+)
    • Progressive (A+)
    • The Hartford (A+)

    Years in Business
    The number of years a home insurer has been in business speaks to its financial stability. Insurers that have been in business for decades and were able to change with the times to secure their company for the future are more likely to be in business for the long term.

    Among the oldest home insurance companies are:

    • The Hartford (established in 1810)
    • Travelers (established in 1853)
    • Chubb (established in 1882)

    Reputation
    The top home insurance companies have a stellar reputation. Their employees have strong ethics and treat customers well, which resonates positively among existing customers.

    Insurers with the best reputation are not surrounded by bad press, scandals, or other negative activity. They also have a strong presence in the community and give back to national and local charities.

    Evaluate Their Service

    A home insurance company is only as good as its customer service and claims service. The best company gets the highest marks in both categories.

    Here's what sets the best apart from the rest:

    • A wait time of under 15 minutes when you call the customer service or claims service phone number

    • Knowledgeable and friendly customer service and claims representatives

    • High ratings in both customer and claims services from insurance industry rating agencies like AM Best and Standard & Poor's

    • High service ratings from the Better Business Bureau (BBB)

    • Five-star service and claims reviews from customer review sites

    • Easy access to the company's customer service and claims service representatives, such as 24/7 phone number, online, or email

    Customer service and claims service should be among the deciding factors when evaluating insurance companies. You want a home insurance company that is responsive and will settle your claim quickly in accordance to the policy.

    Try out a company's customer service department by calling to ask relevant questions. You can also gauge their response time this way.

    How To Buy Homeowner's Insurance

    © CreditDonkey

    There are 4 ways to buy the best homeowner's insurance. In each case, you will be asked to provide information to determine the cost of your insurance.

    • Your address

    • Type of home, such as ranch, two-story, etc.

    • Materials used in the home's construction, such as wood, brick, stone, etc.

    • Size of the home

    • Age of the home

    • Age of the roof if a roof replacement was done

    • Home's proximity to a local fire department and fire hydrants

    • Safety features in the home like fire and security devices, alarms, and monitored systems

    • Credit history and credit score

    • Any claims in your history

    • Risk factors like certain dog breeds, swimming pools, or trampolines

    • List of assets

    These factors will affect the cost of home insurance with insurance company.

    Read on to learn more about the ways to purchase homeowner's insurance.

    Through an Agent

    Agents can help you navigate the paperwork and application process associated with buying homeowner's insurance. They will also help you evaluate which insurance policy will fit your specific needs.

    When purchasing home insurance through an agent, you have two choices:

    • Captive Agent
      This type works for and can only offer a quote for one company. If you already have insurance policies under the same carrier (life, auto, etc.), it may be useful to reach out to a captive agent of that provider.

      A captive agent can give you insight into some of the discounts you can take advantage of for bundling several policies under your existing insurance company.

    • Independent Agent
      This type sells home insurance products from multiple companies. Independent agents can give you quotes from numerous home insurance companies, which lets you compare coverages and costs.

    Online

    You can buy homeowner's insurance online either directly from a company's website or through an insurance marketplace.

    Most insurance companies allow you to apply for homeowner's insurance online through their website. You simply enter some personal information on their online form. Then they will tell you the type of policy and cost.

    An online insurance marketplace is a popular option when you want to get multiple quotes on homeowner's insurance. To get started:

    1. Enter some personal information to receive quotes from home insurers that do business in your state.

    2. Compare coverages, research the company, and review the quotes.

    You can usually save the quotes and apply for the coverage you select when you're ready.

    Over the Phone

    Most property and casualty insurance companies have call centers staffed with customer service representatives who can sell you a homeowner's policy.

    You can also buy over the phone with an independent insurance agency. They are staffed by independent agents who can assist you with a coverage and cost comparison on home insurance policies from multiple home insurers.

    Through a Group

    You may belong to a membership group, association, or club that offers insurance products. Group policies often provide more comprehensive coverage at a better rate.

    It's definitely worth looking into these offerings. But be sure to do a coverage and cost comparison with non-group policies.

    Take your time reading each section of your insurance policy quote. It's important to know what you're buying and what you're not buying in terms of coverage.

    Bottom Line

    The best way to find the right home insurance coverage is to look at 5 key areas:

    • The coverage options, exclusions, and limits
    • How the policy pays out
    • The cost, deductibles, and discounts
    • The customer and claims services provided
    • The financial stability of the company

    Be sure to shop around and compare quotes to find the protection that properly covers your investment. Remember, the best home insurance is the one that's best for you.

    More from CreditDonkey:


    Homeowners Insurance by State


    Average Cost of Homeowners Insurance


    What Does Home Insurance Cover

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