Wednesday, February 28, 2007

How I Saved $700 - So Far

I received my homeowner insurance policy renewal notice last week from Allstate. That's right- Allstate. I was lucky enough to have a policy start date of April 9, which is within the 90-day pre-hurricane season time frame. Hurricane season officially starts on June 1. The Florida legislature has deemed that period as "non-cancellable" for all insurance coverage. My bill however, was $500 more than the previous year. Again, I was luckier than most Floridians who have had their insurance triple, thanks to the recent legislation. But I scrutinized the bill trying to figure out how I could save money. I called the insurance agent to see if I could raise my deductibles. The regular loss (peril) deductible was $1000 and I raised it to $2500. The hurricane deductible was 2%. I asked if I could raise it. The agent surprisingly said she didn't know and would have to check. It seemed odd to me that no one had asked her that question before. Yes, it turned out that I could raise it to 5%. I also questioned the cost to reconstruct my home going up automatically from last year. I reduced that amount to last year's value. I figured my problems in life would be a lot worse than extra out-of-pocket dollars if I did get unlucky enough to have significant damage to my home from a hurricane or otherwise. The total savings came to $700. Which is less than my premium for 2006. And I am not done yet. After more probing, I got my agent to fax me an inspection report for the house for my builder to fill out. With questions such as how the roof deck is attached to wind-resistance ratings, I know I'll save even more money. For example, I have a hip roof which can take up to 12% off my premium. I will let you know what the final total savings is, then you should do it, too!

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