Pittsburgh home buyers must obtain a homeowner’s insurance policy when they obtain a federally-backed mortgage to purchase their new home.
There are two reasons you will want to purchase a policy for your Pittsburgh home.
- To protect your possessions.
- To satisfy the mortgage lender’s requirements.
If you are financing your home with a mortgage, the lender will require a one-year prepaid homeowner’s policy to be in place before you can close on your home. Most lenders require the insurance company to list the lender on the policy. In addition, lenders require dwelling and liability coverage on the house at 100% replacement value. This requirement protects the lender from loss should something catastrophic happen to your home.
The coverage required by the lender is not the only insurance you should have on your Pittsburgh home. In addition to dwelling and liability coverage, you should also consider the following:
- Other structures not attached to the home, such as detached garages, sheds, fences, and guest houses.
- Personal property coverage to reimburse you for replacing possessions like furniture, electronics, appliances, jewelry, and clothing.
- Living expenses during renovations if you cannot live in your home due to damage.
- Medical expenses if someone gets injured on your property.
There are also different types of homeowner’s policies. The kind of policy you need will depend on the type of home you purchase and the level of coverage you desire. Here is a thorough outline of the different policies in this post from Bankrate.
Pittsburgh home buyers will need to choose a deductible amount. A deductible is an amount of money you will pay out of pocket before insurance coverage takes over—a higher deductible typically results in lower premiums. You will pay the deductible on each claim.
Homeowners’ insurance typically will not cover natural disasters, “Acts of God,” or acts of war. However, you can obtain additional insurance policies like flood insurance, mine subsidence insurance, and windstorm insurance.
Pittsburgh home buyers choose to add other types of coverage to their homeowner’s policy: drain and sewer line coverage, identity theft, and business property coverage for a home-based business.
You may need a rider policy that extends the coverage of your standard policy. You should check with your insurance agent and review your coverages periodically.
What can a Pittsburgh homeowner do to reduce the expense of their homeowner’s insurance?
- Costs may vary from insurer to insurer, so compare several companies before deciding on your provider.
- Choose a higher deductible to lower your premium. A higher deductible will cost you more out of pocket for a claim but will save you on your annual premium.
- Using the same insurer for your home and auto policy can be a cost saver.
- Improving your home security can save money.
- Maintain a good credit history. Then, you can check your credit score regularly and correct any mistakes you may find.
- Review your policy annually and adjust for any changes. For example, improvements to the home and the value of your personal possessions may call for adjustments to your policy.
- Maintain your home. Preventative maintenance on your home can save you in the long run for many reasons, including your homeowner’s insurance claims.
It is essential to understand your coverage under your homeowner’s insurance policy. Consult with your insurance agent to ensure you have the right coverage for your needs at the best cost possible.
It is vital to maintain adequate insurance throughout your ownership of your Pittsburgh home. Hopefully, you will never have to make a significant claim, but you will have the peace of mind that comes with knowing you can face any potential issues.
Finding the right insurance coverage for your new Pittsburgh home is essential. With over 19 years of experience in the local housing market, I can help guide you through every step of the home-buying process. Contact me by phone at 412-848-3907 or email Kim.Esposito1@pittsburghmoves.com to schedule a free consultation to discuss your real estate needs.