So you are considering purchasing a home for the first time?
These days, in some areas, houses are on the market for less than a weekend! If you are a renter, or still in mom & dad's upstairs bedroom, (that's cool too) and are ready to buy your own place, you have to know where to start.
Here's what you'll want to know about getting the homeowners insurance piece lined up for probably the largest purchase of your life, so far.
You don't want to wait until the last second to get the homeowners insurance quote of your dreams. The lender, the title company and the realtor(s) don't want to wait on insurance to close the deal - they won't let that happen.
Again, things are moving fast but the insurance piece shouldn't come before you know the realistic price range of house you are looking at, or before a realtor knows you are interested in a certain house.
Everyone knows someone in real estate. Start there. Either have one of your friends, cousins, old college roommates, your neighbor's 30 year-old live-at-home son, or your ex-wife help you get started on the journey towards homeownership. On second thought, a local, experienced and successful professional is your best bet.
Your realtor is going to tell you to get prequalified with the mortgage company of your choice or the broker they like best. Let's face it, you aren't sitting around analyzing mortgage companies and their corporate values.
From there, your mortgage company will let you know how much house you can buy. Maybe don't go with the absolute max loan...
All of a sudden, your realtor has a dozen homes in mind that they can show you....unless the house sells before you are finished teaching afternoon algebra.
Before you know it, you've got THE house picked out. It's ripe and ready for the taking, but you don't have the homeowners insurance piece solved yet.
What you want is a perfect quote, perfectly tailored to your needs, perfectly cheap, right now, and you don't want to skip Suzie's geography class to answer all these crazy questions like, "does your house have a circuit breaker?"
We get it. All you want to do is get the basic policy so that you can close the deal and start moving into your first home.
Heck yes! We want that for you, too!
Let me ask you a crazy question. Don't you think 15 minutes is a little bit too short of a time to set up protection for you, your family and the most valuable asset you have never owned?
Here is the benefit of working with an independent agent. Instead of answering the same questions at 3 different offices, you can have a conversation about your situation, what your long-term and near-future desires are, and the things that make you and your family unique - all within the scope of protecting your financial health and insuring your future wealth.
Having an agent that can get you multiple options from different companies frees up your time so you can get back to your "5 Ways to Improve Your Child's Handwriting" article before having to grade Dylan's book report next week.
Your insurance agent should want to discuss more than the basic coverages. Your insurance agent should be showing you options. Your insurance agent should be introducing you to an Umbrella policy.
Your insurance agent should be happy to send your "Approved By You" quote to your lender, while letting your realtor know that things are moving forward.
Once the home is purchased and the homeowners policy is in force, you will want more than a basic understanding of what your homeowners insurance policy covers. Don't sit back and wait for the policy to jump into your hands and explain it all to you. That's why you have an agent!
We believe that placing homeowners insurance is best done in more than one conversation. We want to establish a relationship as your trusted choice agent. We want to be educators, not talking down to you as someone who doesn't know how insurance works, but as an agent for you in protecting your financial stability.