17 Home Insurance Discounts You Haven’t Heard Of
February 5, 2021
Insurance discounts are like drinks on the secret menu at Starbucks. They’re not hard to get, but only if you know they exist. And most people haven’t heard of some of the best ones.
You might be surprised by just how long your insurance company’s list of discounts is. Do you live near a fire station? Or have a home security system? Are you newly retired? Have you quit smoking recently? Yes to any of the above could get you anywhere from 5-25% off your monthly premium. While that might not seem like much, discounts add up. And every little bit counts when it comes to savings.
Keep reading to check out our list of the top 17 secret Home Insurance discounts.
Disclaimer: The below list is provided for educational purposes only. It is not specific to any one insurance company. Discounts and savings vary by provider. The terms of your policy will always apply. For more information, please speak with a licensed insurance representative.
1. Group Discount
Many insurance carriers provide group discounts to homeowners and renters that are part of a specific organization, like employees of a certain company, alumni of select universities, and members of unions or professional associations. Be sure to consult your insurer for a list of partners.
PROLINK offers up to 20% off standard market rates for Home & Auto Insurance through membership with a participating professional association or affinity group. Check out our associations page to see if you qualify.
Belong to a homeowners association? You might be entitled to additional savings. Insurance companies know that most homeowners groups have strict rules that require regular upkeep and home maintenance. As a result, members may have fewer claims, which may lead to a higher discount.
2. Credit Score Discount
Numerous providers use clients’ credit history as part of their pricing structure; a good credit score can suggest that you’re less likely to file a claim, while a poor rating might indicate a greater likelihood of missing or delaying payments. Generally speaking, people with better credit typically receive the best rates—and they may be eligible for extra discounts.
3. Lump Sum Discount
Pay in full, in advance—if you can comfortably afford to do so, of course. Some insurers may offer a discount as an incentive for paying your entire premium in one go, rather than doing monthly payments. Why? An annual lump sum is a guaranteed payment; there’s no chance you’ll miss out or default on your payments (which is often grounds for cancellation).
Discounts aside, paying in bulk is cheaper anyway. You might be out a huge sum all at once, but you’ll save more in the long run since monthly premiums may be subject to extra administrative fees.
4. Location Discount
It’s well-known that your home’s location will impact the cost of your policy. Living in a high-risk, storm-prone, or crime-ridden area may jack up your rates. But living near a tanker-shuttle accredited fire hall or a lot of fire hydrants could earn you a discount. That’s because firefighters will be able to respond faster in the event of an emergency. And that means less damage to your home, a smaller insurance claim, and more savings for you.
5. Non-Smoker Discount
Where there’s smoke, there’s fire and if you smoke at home, inside or outside, that’s considered a fire hazard. Being a non-smoker means you’re less likely to have an accidental fire, so make sure you inform your insurer. However, this discount will only kick in if everyone that lives in your residence is smoke-free.
6. New Home Discount
A freshly built home will have newer features, so it’s less likely that something will go wrong with aging structure or outdated systems. Even if your home isn’t brand new, many insurers have rebates for homes with plumbing, electrical, roofing, and hot water tanks that are less than 15 years of age. Keep in mind: the percentage of your savings will decrease as time goes on and your home gets older.
7. Unfinished Basement Discount
Speaking of newer homes, many companies give between 5-15% off for having an unfinished basement since it’ll cost way less to repair or refurbish in the event of a claim. Don’t forget to notify your insurer whenever you do end up finishing it though, otherwise you won’t have sufficient coverage.
8. Renovation Discount
Planning an upgrade? Let your insurance provider know. Remember, your carrier wants you to take good care of your home (it means less claims for them) and they’ll reward you when you do.
But be strategic when it comes to home improvements. Trendy or flashy home renos will spike your premium, whereas modifications that protect your home from damage may trigger a rate reduction. That includes changing old wiring, adding smoke alarms or detectors, investing in an impact-resistant roof, and more.
RELATED: Renovating Your Home? Here’s What You Need to Know
9. Water Leak Prevention Discount
Do you have a sensor for detecting water in your basement? A shutoff or a septic system? A sump pump? Or a backwater valve? Flood risk is a huge concern for insurers, especially if you live by a body of water or have a finished basement. Taking steps to mitigate water damage shows your provider that you’re proactive about safety and may certify you for a discount.
RELATED: April Showers Bring May Flowers…And May Floods Too.
10. Home Security Discount
Sensing a theme yet? Insurance is all about risk. And any steps you take to make your home safer, or lower-risk, will pay you back. That includes home security devices, like automated sprinklers, fire alarms, monitored security systems, and any other technology that will deter your home from being burglarized or damaged.
You won’t get a discount for just any old alarm though. Not all add-ons qualify and the amount you’ll save depends on the type of features you install. A sophisticated, central security system that automatically alerts the authorities will save you more than a passive alarm that sounds, but doesn’t connect to emergency services.
Plus, some providers even have incentive programs specific to a particular line or brand of products, so it’s a good idea to confirm with your insurer before you buy. For example, smartphone monitored systems are preferred because they allow you to take immediate action from the palm of your hand, even if you’re not home.
RELATED: Here’s How You Can Protect Your Home (and Your Savings) with Smart Home Technology
11. New Client Discount
It pays to shop around sometimes. Getting quotes from other insurers every few years means you might find a cheaper rate. And if you sign on with a new company, they might be so happy to earn your business that they’ll tack on an extra discount just to sweeten the deal.
RELATED: 7 Things to Consider Before Buying Home Insurance
12. Loyalty Discount
On the other hand, loyalty has its perks. If you like your insurer, stay put. Being with the same provider for a set number years might secure you a loyalty discount around renewal time. Some will take off 5% if you’ve been with them for three years and then bump it up to 10% after the five-year mark.
But you have to remain in good standing with your insurance company. You won’t automatically get a discount after 10 years if you’ve filed a massive claim every year since you signed up.
13. Claims-Free Discount
Insurance carriers appreciate low-maintenance clients. And they might be inclined to credit homeowners and renters who’ve gone a few years without filing a claim.
The number of years depends on the provider in question. For some, you might have to be claims-free altogether, while others may reward you after a year or two or five. And depending on how long you stay claims-free, your discount could increase over time.
In general, before filing a claim, it’s always good practice to figure out whether it’s worth it or not. Instead of calling your insurer right away, try to handle the repairs on your own dime for any normal wear and tear; it might pay off after a few years.
14. Multi-Property Discount
If you own more than one property and insure them all with the same provider, they may thank you by offering anywhere from 5-15% off your insurance.
15. Multi-Policy Discount
A common way to garner a discount is by bundling your Home & Auto coverage. Bundling is when you purchase two types of insurance through the same company. It’s a win-win situation for everyone: the insurer gets more of your business and you’ll get at least 10% off your premiums. The more you bundle (i.e. more properties or vehicles), the more you’ll save.
Plus, when you bundle, your needs will be centralized with one provider. You can enjoy the convenience of having to deal with only one insurance company when it comes time to make a claim.
RELATED: To Bundle or Not to Bundle: Should I Buy Home & Auto Insurance Together?
16. Age-Related Discounts
If you’re retired, chances are you’re spending more time at home. That means you’re also likelier to spot a problem, fix it, and avoid potentially thousands of dollars in damages.
But you don’t have to be retired to take advantage of age-related discounts. Providers usually offer them to mature homeowners aged 50 and older. If you purchased your home early on, say in your twenties, you may be eligible for a deal once you hit 40.
17. Mortgage-Free Discount
The benefits of being mortgage-free might just extend to your insurance. Tell your provider if you manage to pay off your mortgage, especially if it’s much earlier than expected.
RELATED: Planning to automatically renew your Home Insurance? Hang on a second. If you’ve made any of the following changes–talk to your broker!
When it comes to discounts, there are a few things to bear in mind:
1. Discounts aren’t always automatic.
Many discounts are set up immediately if you’re eligible. Others you’ll need to provide documentation for, like home renovations or security updates. Some are built directly into your base insurance premiums, though you won’t necessarily see them written on your policy. And others arise over time, like discounts for being claims- or mortgage-free. But nearly all carriers offer them, so don’t be shy about asking. You never know where you’ll be able to save.
2. Discounts can be capped.
The more discounts you can apply against your premium, the more you’ll get back. But if you qualify for multiple discounts, your provider may limit your total possible amount of savings. For example, if you can get up to 70% off your insurance, the total could be capped at a maximum of 20%.
3. Discounts vary by provider.
The way discounts are administered depend on your company’s guidelines (i.e. age of maturity, age of your home, appropriate security systems and features). Each carrier has different criteria so be sure to double check their offerings, how you can qualify, and how much you can save.
Don’t have time to shop around? Give us a call. As a licensed broker, PROLINK advocates for you. We’ll comb through the market on your behalf to get you the coverage you need and the savings you deserve. And we can share the top insider tips and tricks that will help you lower your rates even without a discount. To learn more, read 11 Cost Saving Tips for Home Insurance. For more guidance, connect with PROLINK today.
PROLINK’s blog posts are general in nature. They do not take into account your personal objectives or financial situation and are not a substitute for professional advice. The specific terms of your policy will always apply. We bear no responsibility for the accuracy, legality, or timeliness of any external content.