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When you want to make your St Croix Home a place in which you feel safe and secure, a good homeowners insurance policy is a good place to start.

Insurance – Not the most exciting word in the dictionary in-fact most people will find their eyes glaze over when just reading the word. However it is a very important subject which all homeowners should have a good understanding of. Virtually all mortgage lenders will require customers to acquire insurance cover to protect their investment as if the home you live in was to suffer major damage or be destroyed the real owners which in most cases are the banks will be the party who suffer great financial loss.

Introduction to Insurance

You do not even need to “own” your home to require home owners insurance many land lords require their tenants to have cover. However whether it is a requirement or not, it is a wise decision to have this protection anyway. This is a step by step guide to understanding home insurance.

What does a Homeowners Policy Provide?

A Standard Homeowners insurance policy that the insurer will provide will cover costs related to the following:

•Damage to the interior or exterior of your property – In the event of damage caused by fire, hurricanes or other severe weather, lightning, vandalism or other disasters, your chosen insurance provider will compensate you to ensure that your home can be fixed or even completely reconstructed if so needed. Damage that’s caused by surges, earthquakes and poor maintenance is usually not covered so if you require this specific type of cover you will need to add this to your policy.

•Loss or damage to your personal possessions – Clothing, furniture, home appliances and the majority of the other contents of your home are covered if they are destroyed within an insured disaster. You may also get “off-premises” coverage, which means you could file claims for lost jewelery, for instance – no matter where in the world you lost it. There may be a limit on how much your insurer will pay for claims. Even if your Rolex watch or mink coat is damaged at home, there will still be a limit on how much your insurer will reimburse you, unless you purchase a separate floater policy which insures items for their full value. You will pay extra for this cover.

•Personal liability for damage or injuries triggered by you or your family – This clause even includes your pets! So, if Fido bites your neighbor Doris, wherever the bite happens, your insurance provider will pay her medical bills. Or, if Junior breaks her Oriental vase, you are able to file a claim to pay her. And when Doris slips on the damaged vase pieces and successfully sues for discomfort and suffering or lost pay? You will be covered for that too, just like if someone had been hurt around the premises of your home or property. While policies begin in the range of $100,000 coverage, experts recommend getting a minimum of $300,000 worth of coverage based on the Insurance Information Institute. For added protection, a couple of $ 100 more in premium may buy an extra $1 million or even more through “umbrella coverage”.

•Hotel or house rental while your house is being reconstructed or fixed – It’s unlikely you’ll ever need this protection, but when cases like this do occur, it will without a doubt be the best coverage you invested in. In the event that your house is completely destroyed or is damaged to the point where it becomes inhabitable, you may need to rent another house or stay in hotels until it’s fixed or reconstructed. This part of homeowners’ coverage would pay you for the price of rent, hotel, restaurant foods along with other incidental costs as you were unable reside in your home. Before you decide to book a suite in the Ritz-Carlton and order caviar from room service, however, bear in mind that guidelines impose strict daily and total limits – but, obviously, you are able to expand the daily limits if you are prepared to pay more in coverage.

Various kinds of Coverage

All insurance coverage is certainly not produced equal. The less you pay for your premiums the less coverage you will receive and vice versa.

The below are the three basic levels of cover:

•Actual cash value – This value covers the home and your possessions after subtracting depreciation (i.e. just how much the products are presently worth, not just how much you paid for them).

•Replacement cost – This is actually the cash value with no deduction for depreciation, which means you would have the ability to repair or rebuild your house to its former value.

•Guaranteed (or extended) replacement cost – Probably the most comprehensive, this inflation-buffer will pay for whatever it is to fix or reconstruct your home – even when it’s a lot more than your policy limit! Certain insurance companies offer extended alternative, meaning it provides more coverage than you bought.

Choosing an Insurance Provider

Cost is essential, but it’s not the only factor that should be considered. Insurance is a very important purchase so you need to make sure that you choose a provider who is legitimate and creditworthy. Prior to signing the contract, get advice from your local insurance department to make certain the organization is licensed, as all insurance companies are required to be. Second, check its financial strength by visiting websites from the top credit reporting agencies. Finally, consider asking relatives, friends and colleagues for recommendations. It makes sense to gain an understanding of other peoples experiences, so ask someone who has filed claims before, about the level of customer support, how quickly claims was evaluated, processed and compensated, additionally for their general level of satisfaction with the insurance provider.

As with every insurance policy, they’re under-appreciated by the purchaser until they’re needed, and this is when they quickly become a blessing. Getting setup with a comprehensive home owners policy will help in making your home become a place of comfort and security.