Article 9 of 9 in How to Purchase Home Insurance
The home insurance application process makes sure the insurance company has all the necessary information before it can sell you a policy. Understanding what information you need to provide on your home insurance application and why the company has to review it may make your home insurance application process smoother, and help you get the best policy for your needs.
Home Insurance Application and Premium Rates
If you have already received a quote for your home insurance policy, you already have an idea about how much your annual premium will be. However, the home insurance application is designed to gather necessary information about you and your home in order to come up with the actual premium rate for homeowners insurance policy. This could change the quoted premium price.
The home insurance application questions will allow underwriters to further assess whether you and your home is a risk that they would like to insure. Depending on your answers, you may be requested to change or modify your coverage amount to give you more coverage in certain areas. For example, stating on your application that you have a swimming pool could require the underwriter to request that your personal liability coverage be increased from $100,000 to $300,000. Underwriters also may request that you put in place an umbrella policy for further protection. All of this will determine the final calculation of your home insurance premium.
Personal Information on the Home Insurance Application
Signing your home insurance application also allows the insurance company to run other background reports to collect more data for underwriting your home insurance policy. Read the fine print on any application you sign! Signing most home insurance applications gives the insurance company permission to pull the following:
TIP: Ask to see any information your insurance company pulls and make sure the reports are accurate. If there is a discrepancy, let the company know immediately.
Home Insurance Inspections
Most insurance companies do require some form of a home insurance inspection, which could be as simple as a photograph of the home. Here, the underwriters are making sure that indeed the property does exist at the address stated and that there are no visible hazards-gutters hanging, trampolines, swimming pools, falling fences, or dilapidated sheds. You may be asked to gate a swimming pool, repair any noticeable defects, or make any changes that bring the house up to code.
TIP: While detailed reviews are rare, there are specialty carriers that do require inside homeowners insurance inspections as well as inside photos. Be aware that you could be asked to give a detailed tour for different insurance companies.
Finalizing Your Home Insurance Application
There are a few final points that you need to consider before you sign a home insurance application:
TIP: Most underwriting requests are done not only for the protection of the insurance company, but for the protection of the homeowners against personal liability law suits. If you make any changes to your home or property, you need to notify your insurance company and make sure you are properly insured!
If you have a question concerning the home insurance application process, ask an insurance professional. To start shopping with free home insurance quotes, click here for the Free Advice quote center.