Everything you need to know about insurance basics, like coverage types, limits, cost and more.
How to Switch Homeowners Insurance
Whether you have it because it’s required by your lender or because you know it’s a smart way to protect one of your most important assets, having homeowners insurance is a proactive way to prepare for the unexpected.
While it’s great to be prepared, it’s easy to let your coverage renew year after year without taking a close look at your policy. Does this sound like you? If so, you’re not alone. Many people don’t realize how important it is to evaluate their home insurance. Not only could you be underinsured, you could be missing out on great discounts! And you might even be able to get a better deal with a different insurance provider.
Let’s take a look at the benefits of changing insurance providers and the steps you’ll take if you decide to make the switch.
Benefits of Switching Insurance Providers
Whether you’ve been with your home insurance provider for many years or are new to them, there’s nothing wrong with shopping around to find the best fit for your needs. After all, you deserve the best protection, price and customer service. Take a look at some of the benefits of switching insurance providers.
Get Better Coverage for Your Home and Valuables
While price is a large factor when choosing your home insurance company, most importantly, you want to make sure you have the coverage you need. Shopping around gives you the opportunity to reexamine your home’s specific needs, since, apart from what a basic homeowners policy offers, you might want additional coverage for a broader range of protection. Take a look at our homeowners insurance coverage page to find out what coverages you might need that you may not have thought of.
Here are some instances you may want to check in with your agent to make sure you have the proper coverage:
- Renovations or additions, like a newly finished basement
- Outdoor additions
- New valuables, like jewelry or expensive electronics
- Smart home safety updates
- New pet
Learn more about when you should review your homeowners insurance.
Customer Service Improvement
Hopefully you never have to file a claim, but if you do, wouldn’t you rather have someone on the other end of the line who will help make your experience as reassuring and convenient as possible? For example, when you choose to purchase home insurance with American Family, we consider you part of our family — which means we’re dedicated to doing whatever we can to help answer your questions, advise you on the coverage you need and get your life back on track after a claim. And our agents, customer representatives and partners are all experts at what they do, so you’re sure to get the support you need when you need it. If you decide to switch home insurance providers, make sure you find one with customer service you can depend on. Because when the going gets tough, that’s who you’ll rely on to pick you back up.
Insurance Policy Bundling Options
Do you insure your home and car with two separate insurance companies? Now’s the time to say see ya later and bundle your policies! What does it mean to bundle? Apart from saving on your insurance, bundling means buying multiple types of insurance policies from one insurance provider, where you’ll enjoy convenience and a streamlined insurance process. Many companies offer a multi-product discount that you can benefit from, so make sure you’re being rewarded for savvy choices like bundling.
For example, with American Family, you can join our customers who save time and money by bundling their home and auto insurance. In fact, when you bundle your auto and home insurance with us, you could save up to 23% on your auto and homeowners coverage combined.* Not a bad deal for simply making a savvy choice!
Discounts on Everyday Products
At American Family, we offer a great selection of discounts — from having smart home devices to going paperless you may be eligible for savings. So don’t forget, when comparing companies, make sure to check out the discounts and talk with an agent to see what savings you might qualify for.
Homeowners Policy Price DropsFinding a better price is the reason most people shop around for insurance. To find a price that works for you, get multiple quotes online or by calling up a few providers. And make sure you’re quoting the same types of coverage so you have accurate estimates to compare. Keep in mind, while price is important, you have insurance to properly protect you from the unexpected, so keep coverage top of mind.
Our advice? Have your current homeowners insurance policy on hand or email your policy to the agent who is reviewing your policy. This way the agent can evaluate your current coverage and assess whether or not there are any gaps. They’ll better determine your coverage needs and ensure that you’re getting an accurate comparison.
Want to learn more about the benefits of choosing American Family Insurance as your home insurance provider? Connect with one of our agents.
How to Change Homeowners Insurance After a Claim
Now that you know the benefits of switching, let’s dive in and learn how you can change your homeowners insurance.
1. Shop for a New Homeowners Insurance Policy
First and foremost, before making any commitments, do your research. Take the time to explore a number of insurance websites. Compare insurance quotes, check out their discounts page and be mindful of how easy or difficult it is to navigate their site. Can you switch mid year? Can you make a claim online? Can you pay your bill online? Do they have an app, like MyAmFam, where you can easily access your insurance cards and view your coverage? All of these are significant details to consider when deciding who you want as your insurance provider. Insurance is more than just paying your premium on time — it’s about having a positive experience that will give you confidence you’ll be taken care of if you face the unexpected.
At American Family Insurance, our agents are experts — they’ll guide you through the switching process to make things as smooth as possible for you. In the meantime, our home insurance checklist highlights everything you need to know, step by step, about key questions to ask your agent, information to gather and important coverage to consider.
2. Choose a New Provider and Sign the Paperwork
Has a provider won you over? Great! But don’t go canceling your old policy just yet — make sure your new policy is in place before saying goodbye to your existing one. Our advice is to directly call an agent and walk through the process with them. This is where that home buying checklist will really come in handy to help make the process quicker.
3. Cancel Your Old Homeowners Policy
Once you’re sure you’ll be able to get insurance from the new company, you’ve signed the paperwork and have set a date to make the new policy effective, you can simply call up your homeowners insurance company and let them know you want to cancel your policy. Make sure to ask about any refund for an advanced payment you may have paid.
In many cases, you can choose to write a cancellation letter or email if you want documented proof of your cancellation request. In the letter, include your full name, policy number, address of the insured home and your contact information. Other than that, you can simply say that you’d like to cancel your policy and include the date you want the cancellation to be effective.
4. Notify Your Lender
If you have a mortgage, your lender most likely requires you to have homeowners insurance. If you have an escrow account set up with your lender, your monthly mortgage payments typically include money that’s used for your home insurance premium and your lender forwards it along to the insurance carrier when it’s due. When you change insurers, your mortgage company will need to know so it can send the check to the correct company and your insurance provider will need to add your mortgage company to your policy.
If you directly pay your home insurance bill, you’ll still want to let your lender know of the switch so they have proof you’re insured.
Ready for a Homeowners Insurance Quote?
When was the last time you sat down and reviewed your home insurance policy? How about the last time you met or called your agent about your coverage? Don’t let your policy be a mystery to you — get in the know about homeowners insurance so you gain confidence and peace of mind that you have the coverage in place to protect what matters most.
*Customers who bundle auto and home insurance policies may save up to 23% on both policies together (as of October 2021). Discounts may vary by state, property, policy form and company underwriting the auto and/or home policy. Discounts may not apply to all coverages on an auto or property policy.
This article is for informational purposes only and includes information widely available through different sources.
Related Topics: Home Insurance