Homeowners & Renters Insurance FAQ

Q: What are some practical things I can do to lower the cost of my home insurance?

A: There are a number of things you can do to lower the cost of your homeowners insurance. The easiest thing to do is request a comprehensive review of your policy and your needs. We are happy to help with that.

It’s not surprising to find quotes on homeowners insurance that vary by hundreds of dollars for the same coverage on the same home. When you shop, be careful to make sure each insurer is offering the same coverage.

Another way to lower the cost of your home insurance is to look for any discounts that you may qualify for. For example, many insurers will offer a discount when you place both your car and homeowners insurance with them. Other times, insurers offer discounts if there are deadbolt exterior locks on all your doors, or if your home has a security system. Be sure to ask Teralyn, Xay or Kelly about any discounts that you may qualify for.

Another easy way to lower the cost of your homeowners insurance is to raise your deductible. Increasing your deductible from $250 to $500 will lower your premium, sometimes by as much as five or ten percent.

Q: What does homeowners insurance cover?

A: The typical homeowners policy has two main sections: Section I covers the property of the insured and Section II provides personal liability coverage for the insured. Almost anyone who owns or leases property has a need for this type of insurance. Usually, homeowners insurance is required by the lender to obtain a mortgage.

Q: What is the difference between "actual cash value" and "replacement cost"?

A: Covered losses under a homeowners policy can be paid on either an actual cash value basis or on a replacement cost basis. When "actual cash value" is used, the policy owner is entitled to the depreciated value of the damaged property. Under the "replacement cost" coverage, the policy owner is reimbursed on an amount necessary to replace the article with one of similar type and quality at current prices.

Q: What factors should I consider when purchasing homeowners insurance?

A: There are a number of factors you should consider when purchasing any product or service, and insurance is no different.

Below is a checklist of things you should consider when you purchase homeowners insurance:

  • Determine the amount and type of insurance you will need. The coverage limit of your house should equal 100% of its replacement cost. If your policy limit is less than 80% of the replacement cost of your home, any payment from insurance will be less than the full cost to replace your home — you’ll have to pay the rest out of your own pocket. Also, decide if the personal property and personal liability limits are adequate for your needs.

  • Decide which, if any, additional endorsements you want to add to your policy. For example, do you want the personal property replacement cost endorsement, an earthquake endorsement or a jewelry endorsement?

Once you have decided on the coverage you want in your homeowners insurance policy, please consult us at Executive Edge. We will be able to help you determine if there are any gaps in coverage that you might not have been aware of, explain the details of the policy’s exclusions and limitations, as well as recommend an insurance company that will live up to your expectations.

Q: Do I need earthquake coverage? How can I get it?

A: The standard insurance policy does not pay for direct damages caused by "earth movement." "Earth movement" is a much broader term than earthquake. It includes earthquake, volcanic activity and other earth movement. This coverage may be available by endorsement for an additional charge. If you live in an area that is susceptible to earthquakes, you’ll pay more on earthquake coverage than if you live somewhere unlikely to have an earthquake. Before you decide to buy earthquake coverage, Executive Edge can help you weigh the costs and benefits based on living in California.

Renters Insurance FAQs

Q: Why would I want to buy renters insurance?

A: If you live in an apartment or a rented house, renters insurance provides important coverage for you and your possessions in Merced. A standard renters insurance policy protects your personal property in many cases of theft or damage, and may pay for temporary living expenses if your rental is damaged. It can also shield you from personal liability. Anyone who leases a house or apartment should consider this type of coverage.

Q: How does a renters insurance policy protect my personal property?

A: A renters insurance policy provides named perils coverage. This means that the policy only pays when your property is damaged or destroyed by any of the ways specifically described in the policy. These usually include:

  • Fire or lightning

  • Windstorm or hail

  • Explosions

  • Riots

  • Aircraft

  • Vehicles

  • Smoke

  • Vandalism or malicious mischief

  • Theft

  • Falling objects

  • Weight of ice, snow, or sleet

  • Accidental discharge or overflow of water or steam

  • Freezing

  • Sudden and accidental damage from artificially generated electrical current

  • Volcanic eruptions (but this doesn’t include earthquake or tremors)

Renters insurance coverage applies to your personal property no matter where you are in the world. This means you’re covered when you are on vacation as well as at home.

Q: Why do some apartment complexes require tenants to have renters insurance?

A: Owners of apartment complexes buy insurance policies for their liability in order to cover their buildings and personal property. However, these policies do not cover any of the tenant’s property or liability. By requiring their tenants to have renters insurance, the apartment owner is assured that the tenants will not mistakenly believe the apartment complex owner’s policy will provide coverage for a tenant’s property or personal liability. Although this type of requirement benefits the apartment complex owner, there are benefits for the renter as well. At Executive Edge Insurance we recommend you purchase renters insurance regardless of what your landlord requires.

Q: What if I share my apartment with a roommate? Do we both need to have renters insurance?

A: Standard renter’s policies cover only you and relatives that live with you. If your roommate is not a relative, each of you will need your own renter’s insurance policy to cover your own property and to provide you liability coverage for your own actions.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________

Kelly Spies

Executive Edge Insurance Services

320 E Yosemite Ave Ste 101

Merced, Ca 95340

209-385-EDGE

Kelly@PolicyPlease.com

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Executive Edge Insurance Services

3061 College Green Dr Suite A Merced Ca 95348

209.385.3343    CA LIC 0F37811, TX LIC 2483887

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