We Can Help You Protect Your Massachusetts Dwelling
In many ways, residents of Massachusetts are very fortunate. They live in a state with tremendous historical significance and picturesque coastal beauty. Residents also face some of the highest property values in the country, which is both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, high values make Massachusetts homes a lucrative long-term investment. On the other hand, high values also correlate with higher premiums. In fact, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, the state has the 8th highest premiums in the country. Such expensive premiums make insuring houses a challenge in some cases, but obtaining affordable protection is still possible. In what follows, we'll give you the most important information you'll need in order to insure your dwelling.
Why You Need It
State law does not require houses to be covered, but this does not diminish the necessity. Your dwelling is your most valuable asset, and it doesn't make sense to leave such an asset unprotected. Without insurance, a single unfortunate event, such as a fire or a hurricane, could wipe out the enormous investment you've made in your house. Compared to the level of protection they provide, plans are relatively inexpensive and could save you from financial ruin. Homeowners insurance is so important to sheltering your investment, in fact, that many mortgage lenders require borrowers to purchase coverage before they can qualify for financing.
Five Components of a Sound Plan
All standard policies will have five components, each of which we've outlined below.
- Real property damage. This shelters residents against damage to the actual structure of their property. Most policies will also address damage to detached structures, such as sheds, garages, etc.
- Personal property damage. Looks after losses to the personal belongings you keep in your house.
- Additional living costs. Pays for your food and lodging while your house is being repaired or replaced after a covered loss.
- Liability. Looks after claims resulting from property damage or bodily injury any member of your household causes another.
- Medical payments. Pays for the medical expenses of persons who do not live with you who suffer accidental injuries on your property. Most medical payments coverage applies regardless of fault. Not all policies include this.
Alternative Coverage Options
If you cannot obtain protection from a traditional insurer because of the risk you represent, you might need to take advantage of the state's FAIR Plan. The FAIR Plan, sponsored by the Massachusetts Property Insurance Underwriting Association, is a program created by the state's statutes that offers residents a last-resort option for protection. Under the FAIR Plan, homeowners can obtain a plan if they have been denied service from licensed insurers as long as they fit the criteria. If you're interested in the FAIR Plan, contact the Massachusetts Department of Insurance for more information.