New Home Buyer’s Guide: How to Ensure Your Family and Home Are Protected

| 2023.03.08
New home buyer’s guide: How to ensure your family and home are protected

When you make an investment, like buying a home, you want to protect it in addition to your family. The right home insurance policy can help protect the building, its contents, and the people inside.

Our team of advisors put together some tips on ways to help keep your home safe.

Steps to Help in Securing Your Home

1. Make sure windows and doors are secure

While the interior of a new home is typically the first thing home buyers are excited to see, there’s another, often more crucial feature that should take precedence – windows and doors. Whether the home is brand new or the home is older, you need to check the structural status and security of the windows and doors.

According to a survey conducted by Nationwide Insurance, most burglars enter a home through the front door, and nearly 25% of survey respondents admitted to leaving doors and windows unlocked when they were not at home.

The first step to protecting your family and home is regularly locking any entryways. It’s then essential to routinely perform maintenance on these features to limit gradual wear.

2. Identify resources and create a plan

Knowing the neighbourhood you live in is vital for every household member. The nearby resources in your home and surrounding area should be noted before or shortly after moving in.

In addition, a list of emergency contacts, an emergency response plan and codes for any in-home alarm systems need to be kept somewhere easily accessible however in a secure place.

If you have any children, set ground rules for answering the door to strangers, having people over, locking windows and doors, and setting the alarm system (where applicable).

Regardless of how safe you feel within your home, risks remain beyond your control. Establishing an emergency exit plan during a break-in or fire can provide additional security for everyone.

3. Utilize timers and lights

The emptier your home appears, the more likely it is to be the target of a crime. The ideal way to avoid this is to help create the illusion of being home – even when you are not.

Timers on your exterior lights are an excellent option for when you are in your house and away from it. In addition, having the TV or radio set to turn on at the same time every day will reinforce the appearance that someone is inside.

You can also install motion sensors outside the front and back doors that trigger the lighting fixtures whenever someone walks near them. Not only does this minimize the need for having lights on all night – hopefully reducing some electricity costs – but it also provides an element of surprise if someone unwanted shows up.

4. Protect your home

It doesn’t matter how many preventative measures you put in place. There will always be unexpected risks that accompany buying a home. The best thing you can do is take proactive steps toward protecting your home and your family against any unforeseeable events.

Selecting a home insurance policy that meets your current needs as a homeowner ensures that you and your family will be protected. To learn your options, contact a home insurance expert to help find the right policy.

Do You Need Home Insurance?

Regardless of how improbable it may feel, the decision is quite simple. There will always be factors out of your control, and the risk of not having home insurance typically outweighs saving a few dollars by skipping it.

A home insurance policy protects the place you live in and ensures you, your family, and your assets will be protected in the event of a break-in.

While home insurance is not mandatory in Alberta, a mortgage lender may require you to have it as part of your financing agreement. Be sure to look into this before signing any formal documentation.

What Are the Risks of Not Having Home Insurance?

The most significant risk of not having home insurance is paying out of pocket if something unexpected happens.

This may include theft, water damage, fire, hail and other events that a home insurance policy can cover. In addition, as mentioned above, you may risk violating your mortgage agreement if you don’t possess proper coverage.

Additionally, when it comes time to sell your home, lacking insurance may make it more difficult.

How is the Cost of Home Insurance Determined?

The anticipated cost of home insurance is dependent on several different factors. The most important thing to understand is that the cost of your home insurance will not be determined based on its current market value but instead the amount it would cost to rebuild/replace it.

If your home has recent improvements or extensive renovations already installed, replacing them will cost more. As a result, your premiums may be higher than a similar home of similar size.

Other factors that could impact the cost of your home insurance are:

  • Your insurance history
  • Type of structure
  • Location
  • Security features
  • Renovations and improvements
  • Interior materials such as marble countertops, finished basement or luxury additions

One of our insurance advisors at MMI Insurance can provide you with the necessary expertise to determine a home insurance policy that makes the most sense.

What Does Home Insurance Cover?

Your home insurance policy’s scope may vary depending on the specific coverage you choose and the conditions that come with it. Features covered may include:

  • Your residence
  • Your contents
  • Other structures
  • Property theft and damage
  • Vehicle break-ins
  • Personal liability
  • Identity theft expenses

What Doesn’t Home Insurance Cover?

As important as understanding what your home insurance policy covers, you should also know what it does not. You shouldn’t expect to be covered for claims resulting directly or indirectly from:

  • Structures used for business or farming purposes
  • Illegally acquired property
  • Property subject to forfeiture, lawful seizure or confiscation
  • Loss or damage caused by wear and tear, deterioration, defect or mechanical breakdown, rusting, corrosion and more
  • Data, loss or damage caused by a data problem
  • Property of a tenant
  • Loss or damage occurring while your residence is vacant

How to Get Home Insurance?

Home insurance is an essential investment that protects your home and financial assets. It offers a number of coverage options to help you recover from unexpected events, such as natural disasters, theft, or accidents.

By purchasing a comprehensive home insurance policy, you can gain peace of mind knowing that you are prepared for any potential dangers that may arise.

If you are looking for reliable and affordable home insurance coverage, MMI Insurance is here to help. Contact us today to learn more about our home insurance options. Our team of insurance advisors can help you get the right home insurance coverage for your home. Call us now at 866-222-6996, and let us help you secure your future.

Coverage is subject to policy wording, terms, conditions, and deductibles. Protection is limited to the perils, coverage, exclusions, and limits shown on the policy.