What are the pre-essentials to be kept in mind before buying your home insurance policy?
What steps can help us to get full coverage of home insurance in case of any damages?
James Conley answers:
Before buying a home insurance policy, please ensure to know full details of coverage offered by the policy.
Some common facts to be obtained for the policy are-
List your valuable belongings and ensure to include your home appliances, furniture, electronic items, kitchen goods, clothing, jewelry, other appliances, silverware and other personal things.
Keep digital records of the policy taken by you. Such records can also include video or images/photographs of valuable possessions in your home.
Make regular updates to your home insurance policy to include any renovations or repairs in your home.
In case you have any query, do not feel shy about asking any question, how so ever trivial it might appear to you.
when selling your home after having building work done to it?
I have done alot of DIY building work to my home loft conversion, extended kitchen,etc, when I sell my home will I need some kind of certificate saying that the work was carried out properly?
and is my home building insurance valid as i did not inform my insurance company of the changes to my house?
I did not get a building inspector to check before I started the work as I was not taking any load bearing walls out.
could I ask a building inspector to examine my property now after I`v done the work?
James Conley answers:
I will assume that the work you did is not something I would look at and say “OH some amature did this”.
As long as the work was done in a “workmanship like mannor” then there is nonthing wrong with it.
Ask yourself these questions —
Does the quality of the work show?
Did the work enhance the beauty of the home?
Did you improve the home?
As far as an inspector, having a “home inspection” done by a profesional inspector is concerned, (this is not a building inspector and very often will not adress building codes) but in most states a licenced home inspector. I would let the buyers have one done.
IF YOU HAVE CONCERNS and in todays real estate market however. You may wish to shell out the money and make a copy of the inspection report to potential buyers.
A home inspection report gives buyers the confidence that everything is in good repair and all the appliances (furnance, hot water heater etc.) appear to be in good working order.
Call an inspector and find out the cost and what is involved. If you don’t know one call your realtor (any) and ask for a recomendation.
As far as insurance is concerned, you should be fine. If in serious doubt, have your agent come out and ask him/her for a letter stating that there are no problems.
Unless you intentionaly did something to put your home at serious risk (electrical work comes to mind), you should have no problems.
Pardon the spelling couldn’t get the spell checker to work grrrrrrrrrrrr!
Do I need additional condo insurance other than what I pay in HOA fees?
I pay about $800 every three months in HOA fees. Do I need to carry additional condo insurance if I have a mortgage with Countrywide or do I just call them and give them the condo assoc. insurance info?
James Conley answers:
As far as the mortgage company is concerned your HOA can send a certificate of insurance to Countrywide. As an insurance agent for many HOA’s. I used to do this all of the time.
However you will need your own insurance as well. Your condo association purchases insurance on the building and premises. Broadly speaking there are two approaches condo bylaws take to insure the property.
One approach is the condo association agrees to cover only the exterior and common areas. You are responsible to insure the interior this can include walls, wall coverings, flooring, furnace, appliances, lighting, plumbing fixtures, kitchen and bath cabinets (basically everything inside your condo). In this scenario you are responsible not only for your personal property but also the entire interior of your condo. As an insurance agent I did not like this approach because it is very difficult to determine how much insurance you should have to be able to repair or replace everything in within the walls of your condo.
The other approach, which I always preferred, was more comprehensive where the association agrees to cover the entire unit as it was originally built. In this scenario you only insure your upgrades (i.e. Bookcases, upgrades, finished basements. Etc.) and your personal property.
You need to carefully review your condo bylaws or have a good insurance agent go over the bylaws with you. If you don’t insure the property that you are responsible for you could find yourself woefully under insured and perhaps unable to rebuild your condo.
In addition to insuring the part of the building you are responsible for you need to determine the replacement cost of your personal property within the condo.
Sorry for the long answer but it is a surprisingly complex question.
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