Our friends from Plymouth Rock Assurance recently posted an article on why home insurance prices are going up. We found it very helpful and decided to post similar article here.

homeowner insurance prices going up flyer

Homeownership is a dream for many, offering a place of stability and comfort.  But with that dream comes responsibility, and one important aspect is having proper home insurance. Unfortunately, many homeowners are facing a harsh reality, especially in the last years – rising home insurance premiums. This can feel like a financial burden, leaving you wondering why exactly costs are climbing.

The Storm Within the System: Climate Change and Its Impact

Climate change is no longer a distant threat; it’s a reality impacting our daily lives, and home insurance is no exception. Massachusetts is being affected among the rest.More severe weather events, like hurricanes, extreme temperature, long period of drought or floods are becoming increasingly frequent and intense. This translates to a surge in home insurance claims, as these events cause significant damage to properties. Insurance companies, facing a rise in payouts, are forced to adjust their premiums to maintain solvency and ensure they can continue to support policyholders in the face of these growing risks.

Supply Chain Blues: Delays and Disruptions

The global pandemic has caused significant disruptions in supply chains, impacting the availability and cost of building materials. Lumber, roofing, piping, copper wire, and drywall are just a few examples of materials experiencing backlogs. Remember those Texas cold spell that resulted in many consequences, such as glue shortage? These delays not only extend repair times but also drive up the cost of repairs. When repairs become more expensive, it naturally affects how much insurance companies need to pay out in claims. To account for this, they may adjust premiums to reflect the increased cost of rebuilding or repairing a home in the event of a covered loss.

A Rising Tide Lifts All Boats: Inflation and Material Costs

Inflation is another culprit behind rising home insurance premiums. The cost of virtually everything, including building materials, is on the rise. From asphalt shingles to wood, the materials needed to rebuild or repair a home have become more expensive. This means that even if a severe weather event doesn’t strike, the cost of repairing a standard claim has simply increased. Insurance companies need to factor in these rising costs when calculating premiums to ensure they have enough capital to cover potential claims.

Water Woes: Increased Risk of Water Damage

Modern home design trends may contribute to a rise in water damage claims. The desire for increased living space can lead to features like washing machines on upper floors. just think about Seaport in Boston, build on the sea level and already experiencing floods. Decision to build on the water maybe nice, but these placements introduce a higher risk of water damage if a leak occurs. Insurance companies see this trend and may adjust premiums to reflect the increased risk associated with specific home features or layouts.

Fire Gone Faster: The Burning Issue of Modern Materials

Unfortunately, even new homes are not immune to the threat of fire damage. Modern construction often utilizes materials like pressed wood and epoxies instead of solid hardwood. While lighter and potentially more affordable, these materials tend to burn faster and hotter in a fire. This can lead to more extensive damage, requiring a higher payout from the insurance company. As a result, premiums may be adjusted to reflect the increased risk associated with the use of these materials in newer homes.

Labor Shortage: The Cost of Skilled Workers

The skilled labor shortage in the construction industry is another factor impacting home insurance premiums. With fewer qualified workers available to handle repairs, contractors are forced to pay a premium to attract and retain talent. This rise in labor costs translates into higher overall repair costs, which insurance companies must account for when setting premiums.

Taking Shelter from the Storm: Strategies for Managing Rising Premiums

While the factors driving up home insurance premiums may seem daunting, there are steps you can take to manage the situation:

  • Shop Around: Don’t settle for the first quote you receive. Get quotes from multiple insurance companies to compare rates and coverage options. We can help you to get quote from different insurance underwriters, ensuring you will be happy with your policy and can shop around in one place.
  • Raise Your Deductible: Increasing your deductible, the amount you pay out of pocket before insurance kicks in, can lower your premium. However, ensure you can comfortably afford the higher deductible in case of a claim.
  • Bundle Your Policies: Bundling your home insurance with other insurance policies, like car insurance, can often lead to discounts.
  • Improve Your Home’s Resilience: Consider mitigation strategies to reduce your home’s risk of certain types of damage. This could include installing storm shutters, a new roof, or upgrading your electrical wiring.
  • Maintain Your Home: Regular maintenance, like cleaning gutters and inspecting your roof, can help prevent damage and potential claims.

Weathering the Storm Together

Understanding the reasons behind rising home insurance premiums can empower you to make informed decisions. While the situation may seem challenging, remember that home insurance remains essential for protecting your investment. By implementing some of the strategies mentioned above, you can minimize the financial impact of rising premiums while ensuring your home remains properly protected.

Having proper insurance and competitive premiums is important. Let us cover your assets in the event of an accident or emergency. No matter what type of insurance you are looking for, look to Banas & Fickert Insurance Agency for the best in insurance coverage. Call us today at 413-527-2700 for quotes or questions. Trust in us to help keep you safe and protected.

Flooded business street in a small town

Massachusetts, especially the charming South Shore, boasts stunning coastal landscapes, vibrant harbors, and a rich sense of community. However, seaside beauty also comes with a downside: the ever-present threat of floods. While homeowners insurance protects against fire, theft, and other perils, it leaves your home vulnerable to the devastating consequences of floodwaters. This is where flood insurance, a critical yet often misunderstood policy, steps in as your guardian angel against rising tides and overflowing rivers, snow melts and downpours.

Understanding the Flood Risk on the Massachusetts South Shore:

The South Shore’s idyllic coastal location makes it particularly susceptible to flooding. Storm surges, coastal erosion, and heavy rains can quickly turn tranquil waterways into raging torrents, wreaking havoc on homes and businesses. FEMA flood maps designate significant portions of the South Shore as high-risk zones, meaning a 1% annual chance of flooding. But even low-to-moderate risk areas are not immune, with statistics revealing a five times higher likelihood of experiencing a flood compared to a fire during a 30-year mortgage.

Why Flood Insurance is More Than Just a Checkbox:

While homeowners insurance provides a safety net for common perils, it explicitly excludes flood damage. This means that after a flood, you could be left facing astronomical repair costs, lost belongings, and a potentially uninhabitable home, all without financial support from your regular insurance policy. Flood insurance, on the other hand, bridges this crucial gap, offering coverage for:

  • Structural damage: This includes repairs to your home’s foundation, walls, roof, and interior due to floodwaters.
  • Personal belongings: Protect your furniture, appliances, electronics, and other valuables from flood damage.
  • Loss of use: If your home becomes uninhabitable due to flooding, flood insurance can help cover temporary living expenses.

Beyond the Basics: Flood Insurance Benefits for South Shore Residents:

Flood insurance is not just about financial protection; it offers several additional benefits for Massachusetts residents:

  • Peace of mind: Knowing your home is shielded from floodwaters allows you to relax and enjoy the beauty of the region without the constant worry of a potential disaster.
  • Increased property value: Homes with flood insurance are generally more attractive to buyers,potentially fetching a higher price in the future.
  • Mortgage requirement: If you live in a high-risk flood zone, lenders will likely require you to have flood insurance before approving your mortgage.

Taking Action: Securing Your Future with Flood Insurance:

Now that we’ve established the importance of flood insurance, the next step is acquiring the right policy for your needs. Here’s what you can do:

  • Determine your flood risk: Check FEMA’s flood maps to understand your specific flood zone and risk level.
  • Understand your policy: Carefully review your policy’s terms and conditions to ensure you understand what is covered and what is not.
  • Consult an insurance agent: A qualified agent can help you navigate the complexities of flood insurance and choose a policy that fits your needs and budget. Here at Banas & Fickert Insurance Agency we can help you to find right insurance and bundle it with other coverages that you may need.

Remember, flood insurance is not an expense, but an investment in your future and peace of mind. Don’t let the allure of the South Shore’s charm blind you to the potential risks. By taking proactive steps and securing flood insurance, you can ensure that your Massachusetts dream home remains a haven, even when the tide rises.

Additional Resources for Massachusetts Residents:

Let’s work together to build a flood-resilient community. Share this blog post with your friends, family, and neighbors, and encourage everyone to take steps to protect their homes and loved ones from the devastating effects of floods. Together, we can weather any storm.

Get a Quote

If you are considering flood insurance for your home or business, contact Banas & Fickert Insurance Agency. We can help you determine how at-risk your property is, then work with you to amend your current Homeowners or Commercial polices for more complete coverage.

holiday banner

The holiday season, particularly Christmas, comes with excitement, high expectations, and joyful moments. However, excitement can result in unexpected risks and hazards. Damages, personal injuries, and accidents are the most common claims insurance companies face during the festive season. Here’s a look at the most common holiday insurance claims.

1. Falling Through the Attic

Missing the ceiling joists when bringing down Christmas decorations is common. That puts much pressure on the actual ceiling, which cannot support a person’s weight, resulting in a missed footing and even falling through the ceiling. It’s best to be watchful about where you place your feet.

  • Be careful where you tread
  • Take your time
  • Bring a bright flashlight with you

Read more

Ground with raindrops

Whether man-made or natural, floods are some of the biggest and most destructive forces of nature known to mankind. According to WHO, up to 90% of all documented natural disasters have resulted from floods, cyclones, and severe storms over the last decade.

As floods continue to increase in intensity and frequency, it is time to ensure the safety of your home, business, vehicles, and other belongings. Flood insurance was built to do just that. 

The sheer number of flood insurance claims made in the US shows that Americans know how important it is to have one. Research shows that in 2017, there were more than 227,000 claims valued at $10.3 billion. 

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Black washer and dryer machine in a laundry room

Some washing machines are equipped with lots of bells and whistles, technology and are often a centerpiece of a laundry room. But homeowners often overlook a basic part of this appliance: the two supply water lines to the washing machine.

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House in the middle of nowhere with storm approaching

The earth, in all its magnificence and generosity, demands one thing: survival of the fittest. This applies to our homes, our literal refuge from storms and whatever else Mother Nature sees fit to send our way. Of course, how well your home survives nature’s ravages largely depends on how prepared you are to do what it takes to protect it. Read more

2020 Happy New Year Graphic

Many of us look to a new year as a way to improve our habits—shed a few pounds, get more sleep, reduce stress, get our finances in order. But how often do you fine-tune your insurance policies? Here are some suggestions for achieving more peace of mind in 2020.

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house fully engulfed in flames

From a dry Christmas tree adorned with 20-year-old lights to a set of drapes dangling near a faulty heater, fire risks seem ubiquitous this time of year. With the holiday season around the corner, it’s the perfect time to address leading causes of house fires and how to prevent them. For the #1 most common source of house fires, look no further than the kitchen.

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oil slick in water

Do you heat with oil? Are you still using a black steel tank to store that oil? A leaking heating oil storage tank is not an issue to be taken lightly. The results could be catastrophic for you and your family.

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