Getting home insurance in Canada is not the same as it once was. Online home insurance has become a thing of the now, where rather than visiting a brokerage in-person or in-office, you can work through the quoting process entirely online. Many companies also offer the opportunity to go paperless when it comes to your policy documents as well, making everything – down to the finest policy details – entirely virtual. If you’re purchasing a new home or looking to secure home insurance coverage with a new provider before renewal time, you’ll need to provide some information about your home.
When getting a homeowners insurance quote online, your prospect provider will likely have a form you’ll be required to fill out. Although the exact details of this form will vary from provider to provider, the gist of these questionnaires is almost always the same. Here’s the kind of information you’ll want to provide to get an accurate home insurance quote.
Your contact info.
Your name, email address, phone number, etc. will be important for your home insurance broker to know. Keep your broker updated if these things should change, as your broker will need to be able to reach out to you if there’s any updates regarding an ongoing claim, changes, etc.
Your personal info will also be a factor when it comes to getting an accurate home insurance quote. You may be asked about your insurance history. Who is your current insurance provider, if any? How long have you had property insurance? What is your current deductible, if applicable? Have you made any claims in the last few years? The more claims/the more severe the claims you may have made in recent history may cause your rates to increase.
Location is something your home insurance broker may want to know. As the geographical location will affect your rates, i.e., it’ll indicate the likelihood of you making a claim based on the crime rates in the area, claim rates, and what kind of natural disasters and weather phenomena that the local region may be exposed to. Physical location is also an indicator of how near your home is to the nearest body of water, the nearest fire station, police station, etc. and may put you at a different level of risk depending on how likely you are to receive help in time of an accident.
When detailing your home, leave no feature out. Include the year it was built, its square footage, its basement (and whether the basement is finished or not), the type of construction, number of stories, and any modifications or renovations you may have made.
Home systems are included in home details. The age of your home’s water, heating, and electric systems may play a significant role in how much you’ll inevitably pay for your premiums, but newer systems can reduce your risk by a considerable percentage. When purchasing online home insurance, include the date and year that your home’s systems were last updated.
Added home features.
Liability risk is something to be considered by insurance companies when calculating your premiums. The likelier the odds are that you’ll face a lawsuit, the more your insurance will cost you. Various features and additions may cause this risk to increase – i.e., whether you have a garage at home, how many cars that garage can fit, if you have a pool (and if the pool is fenced/monitored), a hot tub, a wood-burning stove, a grill, etc. If you run a business out of your home, such as a daycare, that will also be a factor – and you may need to ask your home insurance broker about acquiring a separate home-based business insurance policy as well. If you rent out a room in your home or use AirBnB while you are away from your home, you may also see increased rates. Your broker may ask you to provide this information while you are going through the process to acquire a home insurance quote and they may even advise you to choose a higher liability limit, depending on the answers your provide.
When it comes down to it, your best option is to be as open as possible. Getting an accurate home insurance quote isn’t impossible, but it can be tricky to do if this is your first time purchasing insurance. Working with a home insurance broker is the first step to ensuring that your quotes can be as accurate as possible; moreover, providing as much detail as possible about your home, you, and your circumstances will go a long way. If you aren’t sure if you’re missing out on any info, refer back to this article to check. Finally, if your situation changes or you make updates to your home during the time when you are insured, always update your broker! This ensures that your coverage will always reflect your circumstances and provide the coverage you need if you need to make a claim.