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​How to Save Money on Your Home and Auto Insurance

​How to Save Money on Your Home and Auto Insurance

It’s important to have enough coverage on your home and auto policies so you can get back to where you started in the event of a total loss – but that doesn’t mean you should be paying more than you have to. There are a number of factors than can reduce the cost of your insurance, some of which could save you hundreds of dollars.
 
Read on to discover home and auto insurance savings and discount options that you may be eligible for.
 
Bundle Products
Bundling your home and auto coverage with the same provider could save you on your home and auto insurance. Plus, having the same provider for multiple policies makes it easier to know who to contact in the event of a claim.
 
Increase Your Deductible
Your deductible is the amount in dollars that you are prepared to pay in the event of a claim on your policy, before your insurance provider covers the rest. Generally, the higher a deductible you have agreed to pay when purchasing your insurance policy, the lower your premium will be. For example, if your deductible is currently $500, then choosing a policy with a $2000 deductible will notably lower the cost of your annual or monthly premiums. While an increased deductible can seem like a large amount to have to pay up front in the event of a claim, it could be worthwhile for the reduction of your premiums. That being said, if you do decide to increase your deductible then you have to be sure that you would be able to pay out the deductible cost in the event of a claim. Check with your insurance broker to discuss whether or not increasing your deductible is the right savings choice for you.
 
Improve the Safety of Your Home and Vehicle
Increasing the safety measures for your home and vehicle will help to keep yourself and your loved ones protected, and can also save you on your insurance premiums. Safety improvements such as installing a centrally monitored home security system, and purchasing winter tires could qualify you for reduced home and auto premiums. Be sure to notify your insurance provider of any safety improvements taken so they can review your eligibility for discounts on your policy.
 
Be Strategic About Filing Claims
While your insurance coverage is there to protect you in the event of a loss, a history of small claims can increase your premiums. Before making a claim, consider your deductible amount and whether or not it makes financial sense for you to file a claim and risk your rates increasing.
 
Check Eligibility for Property and Auto Claim Protectors
Claim protectors are an endorsement that prevent your insurance rates from increasing upon putting through a claim. While there are eligibility requirements including an upfront cost for these endorsements, they could save you thousands of dollars in the long run. Check with your insurance broker to discuss your eligibility for property and auto claim protectors.
 
Reassess Your Home’s Replacement Cost Every 5 Years
Your property insurance should cover the replacement value of your home, but this value can become over-inflated if left unchecked. Reassessing the replacement cost of your home with your insurance broker once every five years ensures that your property coverage remains accurate and up to date.
 
Pay Off Your Mortgage
Many insurance providers offer a mortgage-free discount once a homeowner’s mortgage has been paid off. If this applies to you, contact your insurance broker to discuss your discount options.
 
Maintain a Good Credit Score
The insurance industry has adopted credit scoring on property insurance as a tool to help reduce premiums for property owners. If you have given consent to your insurance provider to use your credit information, your provider can use that information to help predict the likelihood of a claim being made. In other words, the better your credit, the less likely you are to make a claim, thereby warranting a reduction in your home premiums. If you want to be rewarded for your good credit with a discount in your home insurance, contact your broker about submitting a Credit Consent form.
 
Inquire About Discounts for New Drivers or Inexperienced Drivers
If a new or inexperienced driver insured on your auto policy has completed a ministry-approved beginner driver education program then you may be eligible for a discount on your policy. You can find a list of driving schools in Ontario that offer government-approved courses. Be sure to also let your insurance broker know when a G2 licensed driver on your policy obtains their full G license, as this will result in some savings on your auto premiums as well.
 
Additionally, licensed drivers attending post-secondary school full time and living away from home may qualify for a discount on their portion of the insurance premium. If any of these savings apply to your auto policy, contact your broker to let them know.
 
Inquire About Discounts for Retirees
If you are a retiree no longer commuting to work you can save on your auto insurance, and may also be eligible for a retiree discount. Contact your broker and ask about retiree discounts that you may be eligible for.
 
Review Your Policy Annually
Review your policy annually to ensure accuracy of information – especially if you’ve updated the roof, furnace, electrical or plumbing within your home. Ensure that the age of dwelling and construction type of dwelling is also reflected accurately in your policy, as all these little details can make a difference in reducing your premiums.
 
When your insurance comes up for renewal, you should use that time to look for cost-saving opportunities. Keep these tips in mind as you review your coverage to make sure your insurance is in line with your needs, without leaving any discounts on the table.
 
If you want to review your coverage, or discuss your eligibility for any of these insurance savings, contact your OTIP insurance broker at 1-888-892-4935.