Choosing a Homeowner's Insurance Company - Buying Smart
The Right Insurance Company Can Make All the Difference
According to a November, 2003 article in Best's Review, America's insurance industry magazine, about two out of every three homeowners do not have their home fully covered.
Owning a home has long been part of the American dream. It took you awhile to get to this point in your life. Your home matters to you. Shopping for the right homeowner's insurance policy for you will also take some time. Of course it is important to have a low premium. Rates vary widely company to company.
It pays to shop around. Ratings from A.M. Best (www.ambest.com
), Standard & Poor's (www.standardandpoors.com
), Moody's Investors Service (www.moodys.com
), and Weiss Ratings, Inc (www.weissratings.com
) can help you with your research. It is vital that you choose a company that will be able to pay your homeowner's insurance claim when you need them to. It is important to know the financial strength of the company.
Shop Around Before You Buy
Check several sources for the best prices. Try getting quotes from a site such as www.insweb.com
. An independent insurance agent may be able to get you the very best price because they have gone over all your needs with you and have determined how much coverage you actually need.
Review the company's complaint record, rankings and customer satisfaction. General sources of insurance information include the American Council of Life Insurers, the Insurance Information Institute, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and your state insurance department. A good website for this kind of information is www.insure.com
You can check a company's rating by customers at www.jdpower.com/homes/insuranceratings
Decide before you begin shopping for homeowner's insurance what kind of coverage and how much coverage you need.
Some companies sell more than one type of policy. If you are offered a policy with less coverage than you'd like, ask for additional coverage. You may need to gain additional coverage by buying endorsements.