Going to own a coastal home? Think about insuring it first
Buying a home is a bigger decision, and investing in a homeowner insurance policy is a smart decision. Since it takes almost an entire life’s savings for an ordinary human being to own a home, it makes sense to protect this investment in every possible way. And purchasing a home insurance plan is probably your first step towards it. But do you know some homes may require higher coverage, such as a coastal house? The apartments in the coastal region may need greater protection due to their unique characteristics. That’s why you may have to shop around for homeowners insurance for high riskproperties. The plans can be relatively expensive. Hence, you need to be well-informed about everything.
How do you know it’s a coastal home?
The distance of your house from the tidal water determines whether it falls into this category or not. The rules may vary from area to area. In some areas, one has to be located within 2500 feet from the coast, while in other places a distance of only one mile can make it a coastal home. With this, the insurance companies can also have their eligibility criteria.
Generally, getting insurance for a coastal home is challenging compared to standard houses. The policy carriers may not cover all the homes in a coastal area beyond a specified number. As a result, you not only get a little scope for choice concerning the carrier but also its price.
Another factor that can impact the prices is the insurance carrier’s policy. The coastal homes located within 1000 feet of the coast need different kind of engineering materials than any typical home. The high-risk scheme may require you to reconstruct your home with a particular type and quality of materials, thus increasing your cost. Some coastal areas can be strict about their costal property-related laws. Due to this, your per square foot construction cost can increase. Also, your policy will likely cost more for covering replacement costs and for following the latest building regulations.
How to select a homeowner insurance policy for a coastal home?
When you buy an ordinary home insurance policy, you can imagine it to cover all the damages and help the house get back to its original condition. But you cannot expect the same for your coastal home by investing in a standard scheme. For example, the homes near the coastal region can have wooden flooring consisting of wide planks. If these get damaged, a standard policy will only cover the cost of strip wood bought from the neighborhood lumberyard. Similarly, it may also not pay the repairing price of the hurricane-resistant windows.
You don’t want either of these situations happening to you when dwelling in a coastal home. You need to search for a policy that covers all the details so that you can refurbish your home with the proper materials.
- Replacement coverage
When you look at the features of a high-risk home insurance scheme, see whether it covers the replacement cost and how far. Such features can compensate for your damaged home and help it return to its pre-loss condition. Just remember how much policy can cover your replacement expenses depends on the policy limit.
Generally, the insurance carriers which specialize in these types of policies offer built-in replacement cost. Some companies can include it in the plan through a third party, and some may not have this choice. However, you have to assess your requirements thoroughly and get something with maximum coverage.
The insurance companies may first want to do a thorough inspection of your house to find out whether its construction materials meet their standards or not. If you agree to modify things as per their report, do intimate the chosen insurance policy provider how much it will affect the replacement expenses. Also, be ready for the annual cost of your policy to increase. If you do all this, the insurer can bear the entire replacement cost.
When living in a coastal home, you cannot afford to take any risk with it because repairing spends tend to topple the policy limit. If you don’t have this covered, you may face difficulty with arranging funds for rebuilding.
In case an insurer doesn’t give you a guaranteed replacement, then you can opt for a policy that offers endorsements. These extended replacement coverage plans can absorb 20 to 50% more costs. As a consequence, you can live in peace because you know your home has full protection against the possible damages.
- Building code coverage
This kind of coverage can come in handy if your coastal home suffers any damages due to catastrophe. You may need to remodel your home following the recent building codes after a loss. It may include rewiring, installation of hurricane-proof windows and storm shutters, etc. If you have this element in your policy, you can get these additional expenses covered. You cannot expect this facility in a standard home insurance scheme. They will likely cover only a tiny part of it. In this context, it is vital to remember that old buildings may not conform to the latest building codes of the place. In that case, your expenses are going to be higher.
How to make the right decision when buying a high-risk policy for your coastal house?
It can be a difficult decision for any commoner to understand all the aspects of a good insurance policy. The confusion can further intensify if your home has some unique characteristics. In that situation, you can do the following things for solving your problem:
- Approach local home insurance companies that deal in high-risk properties
- Get your property thoroughly checked to learn about the kind of remodeling it may require
- Understand what replacement coverage you will want if your home suffers any damage
- Be ready to dole out higher premium rates
- Be aware of all the deductibles
Even though some dangers are apparent, living in a coastal home can be your dream. You may do anything to fulfill it. While it is your personal choice, make sure you take the right steps to protect it from adversities. A high-risk property insurance plan can be your savior.