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Lower Your Homeowners Insurance Rates While Spring Cleaning

homeowners insuranceSpring is in full swing, and making small repairs to your homes. Aside from updating the drapes, you could actually save yourself a bit of money by making some upgrades. Certain changes to your home lower the chances you’ll have to file a homeowners insurance claim, so your insurance company may give you a break on rates.

Check out these components of your home while spring cleaning, and update them if necessary:

Do you have smoke detectors? Newer homes almost always have these, in which case you should test the batteries to be sure they’re still working properly. But if you have an older home, installing smoke detectors could earn you a break on your homeowners insurance.

Install a home security system. Some insurance providers will give you a discount of up to 10 percent for installing a security system. These systems ward off burglars, keep your family safe, and make it less likely that you’ll have to file a claim due to theft. While you’re at it, there are a few things you can do in the yard to deter burglars as well. Trim high hedges, trim low-hanging tree branches, install an outdoor lighting system, or place gravel underneath windows (you’ll hear the crunching noise if someone is creeping around out there).

Structural upgrades. These are expensive projects, so you probably shouldn’t bother with them just to get a discount on your homeowners insurance. But if your roof needs upgrading, an impact-resistant roof might earn you a discount with some providers. Re-wiring your home’s old, out-of-date electrical system might also qualify you for a discount, since doing this will lessen the chances of a fire. If your home needs any structural upgrades, check with your insurance company first. They can tell you if there are any discounts for which you might qualify.

Always investigate the possibility of a homeowners insurance discount before making major changes to your home just for that purpose. There may be very specific guidelines you need to follow in order to qualify for a break on your premiums.