Your home is your most valuable asset – everyone says it, and most people believe it to be true. Out homes offer us shelter, comfort, a sense of identity, and a sense of belonging. We choose our homes for all these reasons including location – town or country, neighbourhood – urban or suburban, and income level – either becoming renters or owners.
If you’re an owner then insuring your property against modern day perils like the increasing severity of our weather, random mayhem, and sudden emergencies like burst water pipes makes good economic sense. While this blog is focused on homeowners insurance, homeowners should also ensure that recreational and rental properties are also covered by insurance and as a tenant, you should also carry tenant insurance to protect your valuables as the owners insurance will only cover the building – not your stuff in it.
Types of Home Insurance
That said, as a home/property owner you need to be aware of the various options and levels of coverage available. According to MoneySense Magazine, home insurance comes in three different flavours:
- Basic Insurance is inexpensive but doesn’t protect your home’s contents so it’s not typically used by homeowners – but may be considered for rental properties.
- Broad or Standard Insurance only covers you from “named perils” that are specified in the policy, and nothing else.
- Comprehensive Insurance, or “all perils” insurance covers you for all conceivable calamities except a list of excluded items – typically earthquakes and floods – along with natural wear and tear, mechanical breakdown, settling, and deterioration. This is the kind most homeowners get, and it’s the kind that an independent insurance agent would strongly recommends.
With comprehensive insurance the substance is in the details so ensure you read though it completely as some policies may exclude water damage, while another company includes it, for example. You can also pay extra to add “riders” to your policy to cover items on the exclusion list, and depending on where you live a separate earthquake or sewer backup rider may make sense.
Then there’s the question of value – how much insurance do you need to rebuild your home or repair its structure if it gets damaged – so consider “guaranteed replacement cost” policies that cover the cost of rebuilding your home when it gets damaged, no matter what the amount.
As for what you pay, you’re almost always better off using an independent broker like TSG Insurance who deal with a number of insurance companies. Other factors that affect cost include bundling your home and auto insurance policies together which could shave up to 15 percent off your total bill, as well as installing a monitored burglar or fire alarm, or even a sprinkler system.
Home Insurance in Alberta
If you have questions about your home insurance in Alberta, or the need for specific riders, contact your TSG Insurance professional in Bassano, Brooks, Calgary, and Medicine Hat toll-free at 1.800.830.9423 today.