Home Insurance: Upgrades That’ll Cost You
When you decide to remodel your home, one of the main things to consider is how the change will add to the existing aesthetics. However, interior designers, as well as homeowners need to practice caution when using certain materials. Some materials and projects may add charm, but with a high price tag on your home insurance premium. The good news is you have control of the materials and the remodeling upgrades you choose to use. You might want to sit down with your insurance company before deciding on a specific improvement. Here are four materials and remodeling projects that can raise the cost of your home insurance:
Swimming pools are a popular addition for family fun, as well as improving the aesthetics of a backyard and general landscaping. However, the increased liability of kids falling into the pool and the high incidence of drowning doesn’t make this upgrade cheap to insure. If a neighborhood kid comes over for a swim and sustains an injury, as the homeowner you will be liable for the hospital costs and open yourself up for a lawsuit. If the opposing side wins the lawsuit, you will also be responsible for both sets of attorney fees and court costs. Most home insurance companies will require you to increase your umbrella policy to include liability for accidents. In addition, you will be required to put up a fence to prevent accidentally drownings. If the materials used to build the pool are expensive, like granite or marble, the home insurance premiums will rise to cover the costs of damage from inclement weather. Homeowners may want to consider alternatives to a swimming pool to provide an upgrade in their landscapes. Other attractive options like a gazebo, pavers or a garden can improve the beauty, without causing an increase in the premium.
The addition of wood shingles might add vintage charm to your house, but you may want to consider an alternative option to this upgrade. Although they may add a timeless look and provide insulation, wood shingles are a fire hazard. In terms of cost effectiveness, wood shingles are expensive to install and will rot over time. Try asphalt roofing which will provide sustainability and not increase your home insurance premium. Asphalt is inexpensive to install, lightweight and is available in a variety of colors.
Every year U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s National Electronic Injury Surveillance System estimates that 100,000 trampoline-related injuries. Although it is an upgrade that kids might enjoy, some insurers may not even allow homeowners to include it in their policy. If it is permissible, then the premium will be at a higher rate to cover any liabilities from falls.
If for some reason the interior designer recommends adding another fireplace to your home as an upgrade to improve the overall floor plan, you may want to pass. Having multiple fireplaces in a single-family home increases home insurance premiums due to the obvious fire hazard they present.
Before the upgrade, consider the ramifications it might have on your home insurance premium. Research options that might provide a pleasing, but cost-effective alternative. In the long run, it will make a sizable difference on your premiums.
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