Your home will likely be the largest single purchase that you ever make, which makes protecting it from loss paramount, both as an investment and for the safety and comfort of your family. Home insurance is an important part of making sure that your home and possessions are as safe as possible. When applying for home insurance quotes, you may be asked a number of questions to assess the safety and security of the dwelling, and your answers will affect your home insurance premiums. The following will help to make your home a safer place and reduce your rates:
1. Lock up
Keeping your home locked may seem like common sense, but it's an important safety tip to remember. Even if you're only running out for a few moments, or doing yard work in the back yard, make sure that you keep your doors locked and your home secure to avoid potential theft.
2. Alarm systems
Installing a monitored alarm system will help make your house a safer and more secure for your family, but it can also reduce your insurance costs. This is because alarm systems help to deter thieves and reduce burglaries, lowering your risk profile.
3. Smoke detectors
Smoke detectors save lives. Installing working smoke detectors on every floor of your home, especially near bedrooms will help to reduce the threat of fire. Hardwiring smoke detectors into the electrical system within your home will also help by ensuring that batteries don't fail in the event of an emergency.
4. Furnace maintenance
The age of your furnace is another factor that can affect your home insurance rates. Many home insurance providers ask specific questions about your home heating system as part of their quoting process. Make sure you perform regular maintenance on your furnace or replace it, if necessary, to get the best possible rate.
5. Home window security bars
Installing window security bars is an inexpensive way to increase the safety of your home, especially on basement windows that might not be at the top of your mind on a regular basis. By preventing unauthorized entrance to your home through windows, especially those that are somewhat hidden, you will help protect your family and possessions against home invasion or burglary. Also, if you inform your insurance provider of the added security in your home you may qualify for a discount - giving you cheap insurance on your home.
6. Don't smoke
Smokers are at a higher risk of losing their homes or possessions as a result of a fire. Quitting smoking reduces your risk of fire loss, and your insurance company understands that. So, by quitting smoking not only will you see an immediate health benefit, you can also save money on your home insurance. It's a win-win scenario.
7. Reduce curb appeal for burglars
Burglars tend to avoid homes with exterior lighting, in favour of homes that offer hiding places. Lighting your home's exterior, removing large bushes close to the building and making sure that doors and windows are exposed to the street or neighbour's homes will make a thief think twice about breaking in.