Home improvements that make your insurance company happy

Many home owners are motivated to make improvements to increase the value of their property. But did you know that some home renovations can also help you save on home insurance?

Here are a few fixes you can make that can potentially help increase the value of your home and decrease your insurance premiums:

Install a sump pump and/or a backflow valve

The rise in extreme weather, fast-growing communities and aging sewer systems have led to an increase in flooding and water damage claims. If you own a home with a basement, it’s a good idea to install a sump pump and/or a backflow valve to prevent flooding.

What is a sump pump?

A sump pump is a device that you install in your basement to collect water that runs off from your weeping tiles. It then pumps the water safely away from the foundation of your home.

It’s also important to note that most standard home insurance policies don’t cover sewer backups or overland flooding (that is, flooding from excessive rain, overflowing rivers, spring runoff and melting snow). You’ll need to purchase overland water coverage or sewer backup insurance to ensure you’re covered.

Upgrade your plumbing

If your home is more than 65 years old, it could have galvanized or lead pipes that can rust or corrode and lead to leaks or burst pipes. Instead, replace them with more durable copper or plastic pipes.

Update your home electrical wiring

Older homes built in the late seventies and earlier may still have knob-and-tube, aluminum or 60-amp electrical wiring which could overheat and cause an electrical fire. You can reduce this risk by upgrading your electrical system with more modern wiring materials like copper.

Replace your roof

The age of your roof as well as the materials it’s made out of could affect the cost of your home insurance. An older roof is at risk for developing leaks that could lead to water damage – it could also result in a higher insurance premium. If you have a typical asphalt shingle roof that’s more than 20 years old, consider having it replaced with roofing material made from stone (like concrete or slate) or metal.

Switch to an electric or gas furnace

Oil furnaces and wood or pellet stoves are a higher fire risk than electric or gas furnaces. They could also cost you more when it comes to your insurance.

One last tip – be sure to let your insurance company know if you make any of these home improvements in case your coverage needs to be upgraded. You may even end up saving money!

Protect your home and the things you love most.