You can save money on homeowner’s insurance. Here are 7 ways.

Robyn A. Friedman — Globe reporter

August 17, 2022 11:35 am

Jim and Susan Graham live in a 2,757-square-foot, Cape Cod-style home in West Tisbury on Martha’s Vineyard. Valued at around $2 million, the three-bedroom home sits on more than 2 acres.

However, even though the Grahams had a huge insurance bill due to a pipe burst in 2015 – and had to rebuild the basement and first floor – they are saving enough money on their homeowner’s insurance to almost cover the cost of insuring their three cars.

The Grahams are saving money in two ways: by building their home and car insurance and by increasing their income.

Anyone who watches television has no doubt heard Flo from Progressive or Jake from State Farm expound on the benefits of bundling – using the same insurer for home and auto insurance. According to travelers, customers can save 12 percent on average.

The Grahams are paying a total of $9,864 in homeowner’s and car insurance – and that’s after a 20 percent mortgage loan and an additional 10 percent mortgage with the central alarm system, which only shows a warning light in the event of an accident. breakage, fire, or other problem. They also reduced their salary by increasing their income to $10,000.

Homeowners insurance premiums continue to rise – premiums rose 1.8 percent in 2019, the most recent year for which figures are available, to $1,272, according to the Insurance Information Institute, a trade group. But it would be surprising to know that more than 26 percent of Americans have not compared the insurance policy, according to Survey conducted by ValuePenguin in 2021. This may be costing them money, as the survey also revealed that 76 percent of consumers who shop around have saved money by doing so.

“Some discounts are common, like discounts,” said Angi Orbann, vice president of travel insurance sales. “But there are many other discounts that may not be well known to customers.”

The Grahams are saving money in two ways: by building their home and car insurance and by increasing their income.

Here are some of the most popular ways to lower your premium:

Improve safety and security in the home. Installing security devices, such as fire alarms, burglar alarms, locks, or smoke detectors will reduce the risk to the insurance company and may give you a higher credit score. “Water is increasing to the point of loss, and we offer discounts for installing water monitors,” said Orbann. “Discounts are available for valves that only shut off the water.” This is especially important for vacation homes, which may be vacant for months at a time.

Change your home. Have you replaced your roof or, if you’re in a hurricane-prone area, installed stronger windows or storm shutters? If so, you may be entitled to a lower cost of renovating your home. Replacing the electrical system reduces the risk of fire, which may also be worth the discount, according to Loretta Worters, vice president at the Insurance Information Institute.

Go green. Some companies, such as Travelers, offer green house discounts that save homeowners up to 5 percent on their fees if their properties are covered. LEED-certified.

Strengthen your credit. Increase your interest rate, and you can lower your rate. “These companies have proven that there is a direct connection between credit and the possibility of loss, because a person with poor credit can delay the repair of his home,” he said. Spencer M. Houldin, president of Ericson Insurance Advisors in Boston. “In order to do this, many carriers offer more credit to those with more credit.”

Avoid saying things. If you haven’t used a car for several years, you may be eligible for a “no-carry discount.”

Keep in mind that not all companies offer the same discount – especially for the best deals. And remember to meet with the insurance provider once a year so that the company knows about changes in your life or changes in your home. You may also want to check with your insurance provider if you are considering moving, as location may be the most important factor in determining your insurance premiums.

“Do your homework,” Worters said, “but your insurance company is a great place to find the best ways to make money.

Robyn A. Friedman has been writing about real estate and the real estate market for more than two decades. Follow him @robynafriedman. Send comments to [email protected]. Subscribe to our free real estate newsletter at Follow us on Twitter @GlobeHomes.