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Before You Buy: What to Know Before Purchasing a House

 

 

Whether you’re looking for a mansion or a white-picket fence, anyone shopping for their first house has a lot on their mind. There are many factors to consider: proximity to stores, property taxes, school district, and more. However, it is important to also consider the implications buying a house could have for insurance.

 

Here are a few things to consider –

 

Credit Score:

 

It is fairly common knowledge that your credit score can have huge implications on almost any significant financial decision you make. This is certainly the case when purchasing a house. Having a good credit score can help you obtain a better mortgage. It can even get you a discount on your home insurance policy. To see how you measure up, obtain copies of all your credit reports.

 

Location of the Local Fire Department:

 

Living in proximity to a high-quality, non-volunteer fire department could potentially lower the cost of your insurance premiums. This also extends to homes that have a fire hydrant nearby.

 

Proximity to the Coastline:

 

If your house is situated near a coastline, it is typically going to cost more to insure than a landlocked estate. Your home insurance policy may even contain a separate hurricane or windstorm deductible.

 

Age of the House:

Unfortunately, living in an older house can mean living in a more expensive house to insure. The detailing of the house may be more costly to replace, which can raise the cost of insurance. Additionally, these home are often less safe because of their outdated plumbing and electrical systems.

Condition of the Roof:

Roofs are one of the most important (and one of the most volatile) fixtures of a home. The age and condition of your roof could either raise or lower your insurance costs.

Loss History Report:

It is important to ask the last resident of the house for a copy of their loss history report. Homeowners can obtain either a Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (C.L.U.E.) report, which is available from LexisNexis, or an A-PLUSTM property report from ISO. These reports will detail the history of losses on the home, as long as the what, when, and where of the losses. If the report indicates significant damage, you may want to get it checked by a professional.

Up to Code?:

Check with a professional to make sure the building has been updated according to current building codes. Homes that comply with these standards are much more likely to withstand a disaster.

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