Do You Know What Your Insurance Policy Covers?

home insurance policy covers

Insurance policies offer multiple plans that provide different levels of protection against liabilities and risks. But do you know what your insurance policy covers? It’s stated that 15% of homeowners don’t know what their policy covers and they don’t know where to check.

Therefore, it’s essential to have extensive knowledge of the appropriate add-ons, exclusions, limits, and so forth. The last thing you want is to file a claim and find out you weren’t as protected as you thought you were. Here’s what you need to know.

Read more

What to Know before Selling Your Home in Georgia

Homeowners insurance is probably not at the top of your mind when you’re about to sell your home in Georgia. However, overlooking the importance of homeowners insurance during the sale of your house may harm you in the long run. There are several home insurance risks that you should know about, such as leaving your old property uninsured before closing.

In this article, we’ll discuss the important role homeowners insurance has while you’re selling your home in Georgia.

Read more

Your Guide to Homeowners Insurance

homeowners insurance

Whether you’re planning to buy a new home or have already purchased it, you must have thought about homeowners insurance. Why is it significant, or how does it benefit you?

Let’s admit a house is one of the most valuable possessions you own. It needs guaranteed security. Homeowners’ insurance policies protect your home in many ways.

If you’re looking for homeowners insurance, you have come to the right place. This article includes everything from what homeowners insurance is, how much you need, and what to consider before purchasing a homeowners insurance policy.

Here’s your very own homeowners insurance guide.

Read more

Will My Homeowners Insurance Cover a Sinkhole?

When dealing with insurance, getting a concrete “yes or no” answer is often difficult. We say this because the insurance market offers various degrees of coverage. Moreover, each insurer, whether big or small, operates differently.

The same goes for sinkhole coverage in your homeowners insurance policy. While getting coverage for sinkholes on the property depends on the insurance company, you also need to take your state and city into account.

We say this because many homeowners invest in sinkhole insurance to ensure they’re covered. This especially applies to homeowners residing in regions that are notorious for sinkholes. Some of these places include Kentucky, Alabama, Pennsylvania, Texas, Florida, Tennessee, and Georgia.

Keep on reading to find out whether your homeowners insurance will cover a sinkhole and how you can protect your home.

Read more

8 questions to check your home insurance

Check your home insurance

Check your home insurance

Getting Atlanta home insurance might seem daunting, and even when you’ve got your insurance settled, you might be wondering if your insurance is “the right” coverage. Does your home insurance fit your situation? Having the right coverage for your house is essential – your house isn’t just the bricks and walls and roof, or even the walls, roof, and the stuff in it. There are a few questions that you can ask yourself to check your home insurance. We’ve put together a list of a few things you can include in a home insurance checklist.

8 home insurance items to include on your checklist.

1. Make sure your home is insured for its replacement cost.

The thing about home insurance is that you want to make sure that your house is insured for its replacement cost. That’s different than your home’s market value. Replacement cost is the amount it could cost to rebuild your house from the ground up if it were destroyed by something like a fire. If your house isn’t insured for its replacement cost, you might not have the appropriate amount of coverage for your house. Your insurance is the thing that can help you financially if something happened to your house, after all.

2. Check that your deductible is where you want it to be.

Your deductible is another consideration about your home insurance that deserves some thought. The deductible is the amount you agree to pay in the event of a claim. (Basically you pay the deductible and the insurance company pays the rest up to the policy’s limit.) The thing to take into account is that your deductible can have an effect on your premium. If you set a high deductible, you could see lower rates. So, if you are able to raise your deductible because you’re financially comfortable doing so, you could lower your rates. You don’t, however, want to set your deductible so high that it would be a catastrophe to pay if you have a claim. Anyways, check that your deductible is where you want it to be.

3. Don’t overlook your personal belongings.

It’s also a good idea to make sure that you’ve taken a home inventory. You need the proper coverage for your personal belongings. So, check that you’ve got the proper coverage for your possessions. That also means that you’ve got coverage for any valuables in your possessions – for example, jewelry. Your home insurance could have a very low limit for jewelry, so you may been to adjust and account for that. Make sure you’ve got the proper coverage when you check your home insurance.

4. Look at your liability coverage.

Your home insurance likely includes coverage for your liability. When you’re going over your home insurance, check that your coverage is sufficient for your needs. Liability can come from a lot of places. If you need more liability coverage, you can consider getting a personal umbrella policy.

5. Discounts!

When you check your home insurance, it’s not a bad idea to look over your discounts. Those are an easy way to save money on your insurance. So – are you taking advantage of all the discounts you could be eligible for? Check and see if you’ve got your discounts straight. The savings can be great!

6. Bundle?

It’s also worth considering bundling your home and auto insurance. (That just means that you’re getting both types of coverage from the same carrier.) The thing is that you can also score savings by bundling. Don’t overlook the possibility of bundling – besides, it could be very convenient. So, check and see if bundling would be ideal for your situation. Anyway, bundling is definitely something to add to home insurance checklist.

7. Check the policy regularly.

It’s also important to make sure that you’re checking your policy regularly. Your coverage needs could change as time goes by and things change. Your coverage needs to fit your situation. If there are any big changes to your home or your life, you should let your agent know.

8. Have you gotten quotes lately?

You might want to get insurance quotes for your Atlanta house if it’s been a while since you’ve seen what’s out there. By getting quotes, you can look at different options to make sure that you’ve got the right coverage for your needs – and the best price. It’s a good idea to get quotes to make sure that you’ve got Atlanta home insurance to protect your house at the best possible rate.

And if you need some help with that, our team would be happy to go on that quest with you. We like making home insurance easy and we like helping Atlanta homeowners save money on the coverage they need. You can get in touch with our team by filling out our online form, giving us a call, or messaging us on LiveChat.

How to insure a haunted house

How to insure a haunted house

How to insure a haunted house

We all know that home insurance can cover some pretty scary stuff, but what if your house is scary all by itself? If you’ve got creaky doors, bubbling brews, and spooky, scary, skeletons, you might need more than your average coverage. So, here are some of the things you may consider when insuring a haunted house.

How to insure a haunted house.

Liability

Let’s start with the basics: A heck of a lot of liability coverage. Liability coverage for your home is the part of your insurance that can help you pay for medical bills, legal fees, and settlements if someone is hurt in your home. Considering there would probably be a lot of ghosts scratching people, making people fall people down stairs, throwing objects at people, and generally exacting their vengeance on all who dare to enter, the house would probably have to have a high limit of coverage, to say the least.

Personal property

On the same token, whoever owns that house (the living ones) should have plenty of personal property coverage, which can help you cover damage to your belongings due to:

A haunted house would be particularly prone to these types of risks, especially if the “throwing plates” thing is considered vandalism. So, the homeowners will need a lot of overall personal property coverage. They may possibly need high-risk home insurance carrier because of the heightened risk, since it may be tough for them to get normal home insurance.

Jewelry & valuable items coverage

The homeowners may or may not need this type of coverage, depending on if they have expensive items lying around or if the poltergeist was brought into the home through a valuable item. If they did need this coverage, though, they would need to add it to their policy. Homeowners’ insurance policies typically only cover valuable items up to a certain amount – and that amount is usually low. So, if a haunted ring was somehow destroyed by a covered loss because of the dark energy inside it, it might be a good idea for the homeowner to have valuable items coverage so that they could replace the ring with a similar, less haunted one.

Loss of use/Additional living expenses

If the situation got so out of hand that the homeowners were forced out of the home by the activity, they’ll want to check their policy for Additional Living Expense (ALE) coverage. ALE coverage can help give you additional funds to keep up your quality of living while you’re forced outside of your home due to a covered loss. For example, after a house fire, your property coverages could help you replace your items and rebuild your home. Your loss of use coverage, however, could help you bridge the gap between the cost of paying your mortgage for the month and renting an extended stay hotel room while your home is repaired.

Vacant home coverage

It would also be a good idea for the homeowners to read their insurance policy through to see how long their home insurance covers a vacant house. Even if the house is full of spirits, a carrier would probably still consider the home empty, which poses a huge risk for them. If a person isn’t living in the house, it becomes more prone to squatters and vandalism. If there were a fire, there would be no one to “alert the media” and protect the homeowner’s and the carrier’s investment.

Even if the homeowner was trying to sell the house, they may still need vacant house coverage if the home is on the market for longer than their home insurance policy will cover. Depending on the level of the haunting, it may take a long while before anyone takes the house off the owner’s hands.

Are perils that exist only inside of the home covered under a home insurance policy?

One of the more interesting questions our horror movie buffs had are from movies like 1408. When perils like fires or earthquakes happen inside of the home, but there are no visible signs of the event outside, are they covered by home insurance?

First and foremost, flooding and earthquakes are typically excluded from home insurance coverage. So, unless the homeowner specifically had policies for those perils, they wouldn’t even be able to start this conversation. That being said, what if the homeowner did have an earthquake or flooding policy?

One could argue that the damaged items inside the home could be covered. You could also argue that there’s no proof of widespread damage in the neighborhood. So, a carrier couldn’t be sure that the damage was due to a covered loss or just the actions of the homeowner. Either way, we suppose they would have to check with their carrier about if and how they would file a claim.

And so marks the end of our basic theories. These coverages may be the absolute minimum a homeowner should worry about if their house was haunted. Still, there could be a lot more coverage needed or a few more caveats that your homeowners’ insurance carrier might have about insuring the haunted house.

For now, you don’t have to be haunted by the thought that you don’t have enough home insurance. Just call our experts today! We’ll get you quotes from different carriers on the affordable home insurance coverage that fits you. To start getting your free quotes, just give us a call, fill out our online form, or LiveChat with a specialist today!

10 questions an insurance agent may ask when you get home insurance

Be prepared to answer these questions from an insurance agent when you get home insurance quotes.

Be prepared to answer these questions from an insurance agent when you get home insurance quotes.

When you’re on the road to getting great homeowners insurance, you may be a little hesitant to disclose a few details about yourself. And we’re not talking about your favorite color. A home insurance agent sometimes needs certain, sensitive information that many people have been taught to hold near and dear.  The good news is that insurance agents know how to keep your information safe and use it to get great rates on your home insurance. So, here are some of the questions you’ll have to be prepared to answer to get home insurance.

Read more

What to do if you’re moving and have to leave your Atlanta house vacant

If you're moving and you're trying to sell your old house, you may need vacant home insurance.

If you're moving and you're trying to sell your old house, you may need vacant home insurance.

If you’re moving, you might have to leave your current house vacant when you pack up all of your stuff and get it to the new house. But what happens then? You still need to sell your old Atlanta house, and it’s still a large investment. It’s worth money, so you want to protect it…but what’s the deal with home insurance? Will it still protect the empty house from loss? We’ll explain what you need to know in this situation.

First things first – look at the home insurance policy.

It’s important to look at the home insurance policy of the house that you’re moving out of. Typically, a home insurance policy will specify a certain amount of time that the home can be vacant. (For example, this limit might be 30 days or something like that.)

There is a reason for this. Vacant homes present more risk to the insurance company because there’s no one home to deter trespassers or vandals. There’s also no one to raise the alarm if a fire breaks out. Insurance companies don’t really like risk, so that’s why they tend to place these limits on vacancy.

Anyways, it’s always a good idea to know what your policy says. A claim could be denied if that time limit is up. And that would be bad – then you’d be on the hook to repair the home and recover from the loss. That could turn out to be a real financial hit without insurance to help cushion the blow.

But that’s not the only reason to know how long you can leave the home vacant if you’re moving and selling the house.

If your Atlanta home insurance carrier were to find out that your home was vacant and it’s past the allowed time, they may cancel or drop the policy. And that’s also not a great situation to find yourself in.

Moral of the story: stay in touch with your insurance company and let them know about your situation. They can help you.

How to insure a home if you’re selling the house and have to leave it vacant.

So, you’re probably wondering what you can do to protect that vacant house while you’re selling it. As we said, talk to your insurance company. They’ll be able to take a look at the specifics of your policy. You can talk about your situation with them and get some guidance as far as how to proceed.

For example, you might have someone moving into your house in a week and it’ll only be vacant for that long – and then it won’t be yours anymore. In that case, you might be fine to just leave your home insurance as-is.

But you might not have someone ready to move into the house. Maybe it appears that it’ll take a good amount of time to sell the home. (That can happen.) That might be a situation where you need to consider a vacant home insurance policy. What’s that? We’ll explain.

How does a vacant home insurance policy work?

To start, you might not be going through one of your super well-known insurance carriers with commercials on TV every ten minutes. You might have to find a different carrier that specializes in writing “riskier” homes – meaning they might write vacant home insurance. (And again, this might not be through the carrier that wrote your original, primary home insurance.)

But what about when someone buys the house and moves in? That’s kind of the goal, right? You don’t want to be in the position where you’ve gone and bought a vacant home insurance policy…only to not need it a month or two later. Insurance carriers are, fortunately, prepared for this very situation.

The first thing to know is that you might be able to get a vacant home insurance policy with a shorter policy period – for example, one month, three months, or six months. That way things are a little more flexible.

The other thing you should know is that you’re probably going to be able to get a prorated refund if someone ends up buying the house during your policy. You’d get reimbursed for the insurance that you didn’t need because the house sold. Ask about how the refund works with the vacant home policy you’re considering – and if you have any questions, don’t be afraid to ask. At any rate, knowing ahead of time how you would be refunded for the extra vacant home insurance if the house sells can help put you at ease when you’re getting your policy.

So, that’s what you need to know about your vacant home in Atlanta if you’re moving. Make sure that it’s properly covered with the right insurance so you can avoid a major financial loss. You may need a vacant home policy to make sure that the house you’re trying to sell is covered.

Get Atlanta home insurance quotes by filling out our quote form, messaging us on LiveChat, or giving us a call.

8 things to check on your Atlanta home insurance policy this summer

It's important to check over your home insurance policy.

It's important to check over your home insurance policy.

The summer months are upon us, and that means it’s a great time to give your Atlanta home insurance policy a once-over. (Well, you could do that at any time of year, but why not sooner than later?) It’s important to keep an eye on your home insurance policy to make sure it still suits your needs. To help you with doing an insurance check, we’ve come up with a list of eight questions to ask yourself. (Don’t worry – this is an open notes quiz. We encourage you to dust off your home insurance policy and use it.)

8 things to check on your home insurance policy.

1. Have you taken a home inventory?

A what now?

A home inventory is basically just a list of all the belongings in your home, plus their value. It’s generally easiest to organize it by room. We know that the idea of wandering around, writing down a list of all your stuff might sound excruciatingly boring, but hear us out.

A home inventory can be extremely helpful. If you ever have to file a home insurance claim, you’ll know exactly what needs to be replaced. It can help make the entire process easier. You can even use your phone and create your inventory in Google Drive.

Plus, if you do file a claim, having a nearly-organized inventory can help add credence to your situation. It’s not that the insurance company doesn’t want to trust you and take your word for it; they’re just leery of insurance fraud.

Pro tip: Include photos and/or videos in your inventory.

2. Do you have enough coverage?

It’s also important to make sure you have enough insurance. It’s a good idea to cover your home for its replacement cost, which is the amount it would take to completely rebuild your house from the ground up. (You have to consider things like materials and construction cost.)

Also, make sure that you have enough coverage for your personal belongings. Replacement cost coverage can help you replace your belongings at today’s prices while actual cash value coverage gives you their depreciated value (which may not be enough to replace them.)

And, of course, you can’t forget about liability coverage. Your liability coverage can help you cover your legal responsibility to someone if they get hurt on your property or if you accidentally damage their property. It can help cover things like their medical expenses and your legal bills if they sue.

3. Do you have all the endorsements you need?

You may need to add endorsements (which are simply additions to the policy that amend coverage) to your home insurance to cover certain losses. For example, sewer back up is typically not covered by home insurance – but you can add a sewer backup endorsement to your policy so you’re protected from this, ah, unpleasantly smelly situation.

4. Are your valuables insured properly?

Many home insurance policies have a limit on the amount of coverage offered for valuables such as jewelry. (Sometimes it can be as low as $1,000.) If you have any expensive jewelry, artwork, valuables, or collections, it’s really important to make sure they’re covered. Have you acquired anything recently that might warrant getting some more insurance?

5. Have you thought about bundling your home and auto insurance?

Your home insurance and auto insurance can be bundled together if you get them from the same company. Bundling, or getting multiple types of insurance from the same carrier, isn’t just convenient – it’s also a way to score some possible savings. That’s because many carriers offer a decent discount for bundling. It’s definitely something to think about.

6. Do you have all possible discounts?

Speaking of discounts, have you gone on an epic quest for home insurance discounts? You might be able to save money just by qualifying for a discount. Talk to your insurance agent and see if you’ve added all discounts you’re eligible for. Has anything changed recently that could help you get a discount – for example, have you had a security system installed? (This is a common discount.)

7. Have you had lifestyle changes?

Have you had any recent life events happen? Maybe getting married? It’s important to let your agent know about that sort of thing. Also, if you’ve made any significant renovations to your home, it’s a good idea to let your agent know. It may mean your coverage needs to be adjusted.

8. Have you put together a disaster kit?

Okay, maybe this one isn’t strictly insurance-related, but it’s still important. If you don’t have a disaster kit, now’s a great time to put one together! A disaster kit is basically a bag of all the emergency necessities you would need in case a severe storm happened. Include things like non-perishable food, water, clothes, blankets, a flashlight and batteries, a first-aid kit, and so on.

It’s important to ask questions about your Atlanta home insurance policy and make sure that you have the coverage you need to protect your house. So, take the time this summer to go over your home insurance policy!

Get home insurance quotes by filling out our online quote form, messaging us on LiveChat, or giving us a call.

How to get insurance for an Airbnb in Atlanta

It's important to get the right insurance for your Airbnb.

It's important to get the right insurance for your Airbnb.If you’re thinking about turning your Atlanta home into an Airbnb, you’d be in good company. Tons of people in the U.S. alone have decided to start earning fairly easy money by renting out their homes to travelers. However, many Airbnb hosts start their experience without truly knowing the risks. So, how can you protect yourself as an Airbnb host? How do you insure an Airbnb? Let’s take a look.

Will my home insurance cover me as an Airbnb host?

A typical Atlanta home insurance policy is only built to handle everyday risks, such as visitors getting hurt or disaster perils. Even if your policy does allow you to have temporary tenants, insuring any space in your home as an Airbnb will be a bit different because of the sheer volume and variety of visitors you’ll have.

This means that you’ll likely need to insure the Airbnb as a type of commercial rental property. There are a few ways to go about insuring your home as an Airbnb. Each way, though, will depend on how much of your home is being rented out and how often you plan on listing the location.

Host Protection & Host Guarantee vs. Insurance for your Airbnb

It’s important to note that Airbnb does offer host protection and host guarantee plans per guest booking.

However, Airbnb specifically states that these plans DO NOT take the place of insurance. In fact, there are tons of conditions and exclusions that must be fulfilled for Airbnb before a host can be compensated using the guarantee.

At any rate, it’s usually better all around to talk to your insurance agent first so you can get the coverage you need and not depend solely on the host guarantee.

Make sure you have the right insurance for your Airbnb.

How can I get insurance for an Airbnb?

The type and cost of commercial property insurance you’ll need for your Airbnb will mainly depend on your house’s primary use.

  • If you still live in the home and are renting out a few rooms: Some carriers may require you to add an endorsement that lets them cover the risk of increased occupancy.
  • If you’re using the property solely as an Airbnb: You’ll probably need a separate commercial rental property policy. Remember, though, that insuring a single house or rental unit usually isn’t as expensive as insuring an entire apartment building, even if you rotate guests on a regular basis.

How much insurance do I need for an Airbnb?

When insuring personal belongings or decorations inside of your home/Airbnb, your carrier may let you choose how high your property damage coverage limit is. This is why it’s vital to take an inventory.

(Also, keep your deductible in mind if you do want to file a claim in the future.) In any case, check with your agent about your insurance requirements, what your policy already covers, and how high of a coverage limit you’ll need to choose to properly protect your home.

What will an agent need to know to get a quote for Airbnb insurance?

An Airbnb will face more risks than a typical owner-occupied house. So, there are specific details that your insurance agent may need to know when signing up for insurance or adding coverage to your policy. These are some of the questions you should be prepared to answer when insuring your Airbnb:

  • Is the property deeded in your name or under a business organization?
  • How many units are you renting out in the home?
  • How long will each guest be staying on average? What is the minimum amount of time a guest will stay?
  • What is your address?
  • What is the square footage of the home?
  • How many bathrooms are in the home?
  • What kind of finishes are in your house? (i.e. custom, builder-grade, etc.)
  • If the home is over 40 years old, have the plumbing, electrical, and A/C systems been updated? When?
  • How old is the roof?
  • What deductible would you like?
  • How much personal property coverage would you like?

Local laws and regulations.

As Airbnb and other sharing services grow, more and more city governments are regulating their practices. Some cities and towns may require specific notice or permits when running a short-term rental. Other towns may not allow Airbnbs at all. So, check your local laws on short-term rentals before setting up your home as an Airbnb.

Overall, Airbnb can be a great way to earn money and open up your home for travelers to experience more of your city. As a homeowner, though, it’s important to keep your house, as your investment, safe. While Airbnb’s host protection and guarantee plans may offer extra protection, it’s important to have the right insurance for your short-term rental so that any hosting-related claims aren’t denied when you need it most.

Our experts can help you find affordable rates on Atlanta home insurance whether you need a typical owner-occupant policy or you need to add specific coverages. LiveChat with us, fill out our online form, or give us a call today to stop missing out on great home insurance coverage for the rates you deserve.