Do you have adequate homeowner insurance coverage?
By Laura Lewis
When you experience a total loss — as the author did with her heirloom ring — you want to be able to put things back the way they were.
When you think of purchasing insurance, you may feel the most important factor is how much money you can save. We are all inundated with ads pushing a money-saving mindset complete with cute animals, catchy phrases and superstars.
Those ads may promote savings in the short run, but you’ll want to weigh one very important question: When you saved a few dollars on the front end, is that really what you will care about in the event of a total loss?
If the insurance you purchased is not enough to replace the entire attached garage after a windstorm and you have to pay some of your own money to complete the reconstruction, I doubt the first thing you will be thinking is, “Well, at least I saved money when I bought this insurance.”
WHAT A “SMALL” LOSS MEANT TO ME
I once lost my three-stone, $18,000 engagement ring when it slipped off my finger one winter morning. while attending a lunch with co-workers. I took my gloves off at the restaurant, and my engagement ring – with a 100-year-old center stone inherited from my grandmother – was nowhere in sight. After sobbing and searching for weeks, I reluctantly reported the claim. The claims adjuster and jeweler worked with me to recreate my ring, even down to the fact that the two side stones were not of equal size; I refused to split the difference for two equal-sized stones.
I was emotional… and in all that emotion, I just wanted everything exactly the way it was.
As worked up as I was about a piece of jewelry, I can only imagine how upset I would be about losing my home. However, I understand that reality through the experience of my friend, Tina.
WHAT A LARGE LOSS MEANT TO A FRIEND
Tina lost her entire house to a kitchen fire in 2016. It took nine months working with her insurance carrier to rebuild her home. She called me on the night of the fire to tell me that her family was OK, and that she hoped she had enough insurance to rebuild her home … to “get her life back.”
No one enjoys preparing for the rare worst-case scenarios. Typically, you purchase insurance when you buy a home; if you witness superior claims service provided to a friend; or when you want to save money. As my friend discovered, maybe we should place more importance on value rather than cost, coverage rather than premium savings.
Insurance coverage on your home is meant to protect you in that horrific moment that everyone thinks will not happen to them. The appropriate amount of coverage on your home can give you peace of mind, knowing that you have adequate coverage limits to rebuild your home… to “get your life back.”
When it comes to that loss that you thought would never happen to you, it is not up to the fairytale characters, jingles or celebrities to pick up the pieces. It is up to your insurance company and you. Talk to your insurance agent about how to obtain full replacement cost for your home.
Coverages described here are in the most general terms and are subject to actual policy conditions and exclusions. For actual coverage wording, conditions and exclusions, refer to the policy or contact your independent agent.
Info gathered from Cincinnati Insurance Company