How Much Does Homeowners Insurance Cost

Eight Common Factors That Can Affect The Cost Of Homeowners Insurance For Southeastern MA & South Coast MA Residents

“How much will my home insurance cost?” is one of the most frequently asked questions we hear from aspiring home buyers as well as from homeowners whose policies are about to renew.

Of course, the team at Morse wants to provide you with a simple answer to this question, and all of your home insurance queries for that matter. But, the truth is, this particular question is not as straightforward as you may think it should be, and here’s why:

A comprehensive home insurance policy is customized to fit the characteristics of your unique property, your special homeowner needs, and your budget.

Unlike the everyday things you purchase from a store or online, that already have a price tag attached and come as advertised, the Morse team would like you to think of your home insurance policy as more of a special-order piece of furniture.

For example, if you were in the market for a custom handcrafted coffee table, a builder would want to know several key things before ever discussing price with you, including: the table size you are looking for, the type of materials you desire, any limit on what you want to spend, and much more.

Well, the very same concept applies to designing the proper and most affordable home insurance policy for you. At Morse, we will need to understand some critical factors about your potential or current home before customizing your insurance policy and finding you the best premium.

The Eight Factors That Can Affect The Cost Of Home Insurance

In addition to being curious about the factors that can impact the cost of your home insurance policy, you might also be very interested in knowing which factors are more likely to make your premium go up and which can help reduce your rate. While meeting with you in person or speaking to you over the phone would always be our preferred way of giving you critical and personalized information, we are happy to provide you with some general insights into the common factors that typically affect the cost of home insurance:

The Cost to Rebuild Your Home

If your home was destroyed by a windstorm, fire, or another common peril covered by your home insurance, what would it cost to rebuild it to the exact state it was in before being damaged? Generally, the cost to rebuild – or what your insurer refers to as the Replacement Value – is not the same as the original purchase price you paid for your home. Instead, it will include the replacement cost for any updates you’ve made since your purchase, such as installing hardwood floors throughout and upgrading the kitchen. In addition, it will take into consideration the current marketplace costs in your geographic location for things like construction materials, labor, and debris removal.

The Age of Your Home

New Englanders are no stranger to quaint, antique homes; in fact, many of the streets in Southeastern Massachusetts we drive every day are adorned with mid-century colonials, capes, and cottages. While an older home is full of charm and ornate detailing, such as crown moldings, curved entryways and stained-glass windows, these unique, and sometimes historical, architectural features, can be very costly to replace and restore. In the event of an insured peril, such as fire or water damage, these older homes are typically more expensive to repair or rebuild to their original condition versus newer construction. This is why a higher home insurance premium is often associated with an older home.

The Materials That Make Up Your Home

The building materials used to construct your dwelling can also affect the cost of your insurance premium. And that’s because certain materials carry more risk than others. Homes made of hard, dry substances, such as brick or stone, are often assigned a lower premium than homes made of softer, more flammable materials, like wood, which can be highly vulnerable to fire, water, and pest damage.

Special Features

When you started your home search, you probably made a list of the features you needed to have, like four bedrooms and a large kitchen, and those that would be nice to have, like a swimming pool or hot tub. While these nice-to-have amenities really can put a property over the top in terms of desirability, they can also increase the risk of an injury occurring at your home. Therefore, homes with special features like swimming pools, hot tubs, trampolines, and even wood-burning stoves typically carry higher insurance premiums due to the increased liability risk.

Community Safety

When you’re considering planting roots in a new town or city, it’s important to understand just how safe your new neighborhood is. While there are many details you will want to ask your realtor about the community in order to ensure the security of your home and family, two of the most important things to find out are how far your home is from a fire hydrant and what the distance is to the nearest local fire department. Not only is this critical information to have for safety reasons, but the answer can also affect how much you will be expected to pay in home insurance premiums. In fact, homes that are located in close proximity to fire hydrants and a permanently staffed fire department can expect to pay less in insurance.

In addition, the number and severity of claims in your surrounding community can affect your policy as well. That’s why, if you are looking at homes along the water, which are far more susceptible to flooding, or in a neighborhood that has experienced a recent spike in thefts and vandalism, you will likely see this reflected in higher home insurance rates.

Your Family Pet

A dog can be a great addition to any household; however, depending on the breed, your insurer may increase your premium. That’s because some carriers consider certain breeds to be more aggressive, and therefore more of a risk to insure. In order to avoid a substantial increase to your home insurance, though, your Morse insurance agent will ask you about the history and temperament of your four-legged companion and try to place your policy with a carrier that is more dog-friendly.

Your Personal Claims History

Accidents happen, which is precisely why having a comprehensive home insurance policy is essential protection against whatever life may throw at you and your property. However, it’s important to understand that your insurance carrier will likely take into account any past claims when determining your insurance premium. Insurers believe that a history of claims, regardless of size and severity, generally equates to a higher risk insured. On the flip side, if you’ve shown that you’re a responsible homeowner, with minimal to no claims on your record, you may be eligible for a lower homeowners rate as well as a variety of cost-saving discounts.

Available Discounts

At Morse, our top priority is to make sure that you and your home are properly safeguarded; however, we are also very diligent about ensuring that your premium makes sense for you financially as well. One way that we are able to lower your premium is by finding cost-saving discounts through our select group of top national insurance carriers. Below are three of the most common discounts available to homeowners, but we also have access to many other ways you might be able to save on your home insurance. Which is why, we encourage you to contact your Morse agent to learn more about what specific discounts make the most sense for you based on your unique needs.

  • Bundle and Save. If you bundle your home and auto insurance policies with the same insurer, most of the top carriers will reward you with up to 20 percent off your premium.
  • Loyalty Rewards. It’s tempting to shop around when your insurance rates go up. However, by doing so, you may be missing out on the rewards that some insurers offer to their most loyal clients. In fact, homeowners who stay with the same insurance provider for multiple years generally receive a special discount of 5 to 10 percent depending on their length and loyalty.
  • Home Security Credits. Installing smoke detectors, a burglar alarm and dead-bolt locks will not only increase the overall security of your home but may also lower your insurance costs. While the level of savings varies among insurance providers, you can expect to receive anywhere from 5 to 20 percent off your premium for taking these simple safety measures in your home.

As you can tell from the list of eight factors above, answering the question, “What will my home insurance cost?” is quite involved. So, just as you would be highly suspicious if your new, one-of-a-kind coffee table were to show up on your doorstep without ever speaking to the designer, Morse would encourage you to be similarly cautious if you receive a homeowners insurance quote without talking to an experienced insurance specialist about your unique needs. A customized and, more importantly, accurate insurance quote and policy takes time as there are a variety of factors that need to be properly addressed first.

At Morse, we will not only take the necessary steps to build you a proper home insurance policy that fits your budget, but we will also make sure that you know exactly what you are paying for. So, whether you are in the market to buy a new home or you are a current homeowner who would like more insight into why you are paying what you are for home insurance, the dedicated team at Morse would love nothing more than the opportunity to meet with you, learn more about your specific home insurance needs, and tailor a homeowners insurance policy that is just right for you. For a complimentary policy review, stop by any one of our four convenient locations or give us a call at 508-238-0056 today.

Hear What Our Clients Have To Say
"The team at Morse Insurance handles all my personal and business insurance needs. I expect and receive professional insurance recommendations tailored to my particular needs and circumstances. I could not ask for a more attentive, conscientious and friendly group of people."

Steve, Morse Insurance Client

"Morse Insurance truly maximizes my insurance dollar while giving me appropriate, well thought out insurance strategies. Their continued dedication and commitment to providing the balanced combination of value and peace of mind is why I keep working with them."

Sonja, Morse Insurance Client

"Morse has handled the Professional Liability, Business General Liability, Auto, and Workers’ Comp for our company for over 10 years. Their attention to detail is what sets them apart. I've been with some agencies and you call in only to get an agent who you don't know and who doesn't know you. It's not really a personal relationship. With Morse, I call up Donna and say, 'This is Bill' and she answers my questions. They're small, but they're large at the same time. You can really trust that they'll get things done."

Bill, Morse Insurance Client

"I've been with Morse for 12 years with my Business Fleet Auto and Workers’ Comp, along with my personal Auto, Homeowner's and Multi-Family Property Insurance. Unlike national insurance companies, the Morse team works and lives in the area so they understand what coverage is suitable for this region and my needs. I love that they are locally owned and managed."

Sonja, Morse Insurance Client

"Morse handles all of our Commercial Insurance: Liability, Workers comp, Property and Casualty, and Auto. I completely trust that they have our best interest in mind when they make recommendations about what we need and don't need. Plus, they have top notch customer service, are local and accessible, so when I need something they can turn a requests around quickly. We couldn't be happier with them."

Patti, Morse Insurance Client

"Working with Morse Insurance is like working with your family, we feel like we're a part of their family and they're a part of ours. The entire team is very human and funny with great personalities. It's clear that they love what they do and that they love their customers. They're great people, wonderful neighbors, and an awesome company and I just love doing business with them."

Patti, Morse Insurance Client

"Morse Insurance has been our agency for nearly 20 years. At first they provided our Homeowner's Insurance, then we added Auto Insurance. Later, when we started our business, it was General Liability and Errors and Omissions Insurance. The team at Morse is always there to guide us through these complex products. We feel they get us the best products at a fair price and know us on a personal basis."

Larry and Donna, Morse Insurance Clients

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