Tagged: Homeowners Insurance

Should I increase my Homeowners Deductible

Yes, do what I did.  I went from a $250 deductible to $1000!

Increase it.  Do it today.  You’ll save about $75-100, maybe as much as $130 or $140.  It depends on so many factors so it’s impossible to say exactly what the savings will be until your agent actually quotes it for you.

If your deductible is already $1000 then see what the next lowest amount is and get a quote.

Oh wait!!!  Did I mention what happened to us a week after we increased our deductible?  We had a claim.  It was probably my fault.  I say that because I was the last one to touch the dishwasher.  I started it before bed, came down the next morning and the floor was buckled.  At first I thought my dog had gone to the bathroom but after smelling the floor I ruled that out.  Water had leaked out of the dishwasher and down in the basement.

Poor little guy gets blamed for everything!

Damage to the kitchen floor, the cabinets, the basement ceiling… What a mess.  Travelers paid for it, well all but $1000 that is.

So why would I recommend you increasing your deductible if this happened to me?

My father in law is handy.  He can do most things in regards to home repair.  He can’t remove and replace cabinets but he can certainly take care of the basement ceiling, the painting in the kitchen and some other things.  Plus we shopped around and found a few good deals and were able to upgrade to a tile floor as well as a tile back splash above our new custom built cabinets.

So if you are handy at all or if you have a good reliable person that is handy, you should definitely consider increasing your deductible.  When you have a homeowners claim, there are ways you can be creative and find that you are not out the increased amount of the deductible.

A second reason an increase makes sense is that if you have not had a claim in a while or ever, you are most likely getting a Loss Free Discount.  This discount can be very high, I’ve seen it as high as $400.  If you file a claim, you will lose this discount for at least 3 years, maybe 5.  So if your Loss Free Discount is $250 and you lose it for 5 years, that means that YOU will pay$1250 for your claim PLUS your deductible.

In order for it to make sense to file a claim, the estimate for your damages needs to be at least this amount.  Otherwise you are better off just paying out of pocket for the repairs.

I know, it’s not fair.  You have been paying for insurance for years.  Why can’t you use it when you need it?  Well, unfortunately, that is the way that it is.  Insurance is meant for sudden and accidental events in which there is significant damage.  This is the approach that we need to have going forward.

Have you asked your agent for a quote to increase your homeowners deductible?

Keith Laskey

RBA/The Laskey Group

610-948-4830 (O)