One of the primary reasons that people find themselves underinsured when it comes to their home is their fear of the insurance policy. How can someone be afraid of a few sheets of paper? Easy. An insurance policy can be an intimidating document. And yet, it is critically important that homeowners get to know it in detail so they understand what they are covered for—and what is not covered.
It’s true that policies use language that we’re not used to seeing. It’s jargon, really, technical and legal terms that we don’t use in our conversation and may not even understand. It can be pretty scary to look for low-cost Illinois homeowners insurance quotes and find that you simply don’t understand your policy.
There are a few things to help you feel more comfortable with the lingo and that will help you better understand what you are reading. After all, an educated consumer is a smart consumer.
First, do some online research. There are many articles that help define terms that seem strange. Other articles can alert you to the kinds of considerations you need to have in mind when you read a policy. Exclusions, limitations, coverage, riders are all concepts that seem intimidating but are fairly easy to understand, once explained.
After you’ve done a little research, call the agents with the companies you are considering. An agent is almost always happy to help you understand your policy. It is to their benefit that you understand what is covered and what isn’t. For example, it might be wise to get flood insurance or a jewelry rider—or insure your computer equipment. Your agent knows all that.
Once you’ve talked to an agent, you’ll find your next conversations to go much more smoothly. You’ll have a better understanding of what you need if you talk to multiple agents. Each one may have a slightly different take on your home and your situation.
You don’t have to become an expert in insurance, either. You just have to know enough about how a policy relates to your specific needs. After all, if something happens you do not want to have to bear the financial burden of replacing costly items—that’s what insurance is for. And in the worst possible scenario, one of those costly items might be your house, itself.