Thomas Jefferson once called Delaware "a jewel among the states." Residents of the Jewel State do indeed have many reasons to be proud, though pride only goes so far when you need to protect your home and family. Delaware home insurance is intended to help you maintain the life you know in the event of disaster. In New Castle, the average winter temperature is 34 degrees, and State Farm warns that "an eight-inch crack in a pipe can spew up to 250 gallons of water a day." You might insulate your pipes, or turn off the water valve, but the best way to prevent excessive losses when disaster strikes is to insure your home and your possessions. The starting point? Shopping around for the best Delaware insurance quotes.
The Standard Policies
In the Blue Hen State, there are seven types of policies, which serve as the baseline for your Delaware home insurance quotes:
- HO-1: This very basic policy covers fire, lightning, smoke, wind, hail, burglary, theft, vandalism and bodily injury. Not many companies offer this policy, due to its limitations.
- HO-2: Offers HO-1 protection plus damage from falling objects, the weight of ice and snow, water leaking from a plumbing system, electrical damage to appliances, and more.
- HO-3: This Special Form Policy is the most widely used; it covers your home for all risks of physical loss, except for those that are specifically excluded in the policy.
- HO-4: For apartment owners, this policy protects the contents of the apartment as well as personal liability for injuries suffered there.
- HO-5: The same as HO-3, with additional coverage for personal possessions in the event of physical loss (unless specifically excluded in the policy).
- HO-6: The same as HO-4, but for condominiums.
- HO-8: Similar to HO-1, but offers actual cash value coverage instead of replacement cost coverage. You would want this policy when the replacement value of the property is more than the market value, as with older homes.
Simple Steps for Discounts
The key to finding low Delaware home insurance quotes is making yourself low-risk in the eyes of potential insurers. You'll receive lower rates if you have a high credit score and unblemished insurance history. Likewise, if insurance companies believe your house is safe, they'll give you lower Delaware home insurance quotes. In December 2009, the average Delaware premium was $633. One factor that determines your cost is fire protection, which refers to your distance from the nearest fire department and hydrant. If you add smoke alarms and fire extinguishers to your house, you can drive that $633 down to $538. And if you protect against theft-with deadbolt locks, an alarm system, and window locks-you can save 10% on your annual premium.
Remember, you can't just peck around like a hen if you want the best home insurance rates. Take the time to carefully consider all factors. Dwelling coverage for a 2,000 square foot house in Wilmington should be at least at least $200,000 on average. But extensive upgrades, such as granite countertops and stainless steel appliances, may drive the adequate coverage closer to $350,000. Such additional protection doesn't have to cost a lot more. If you upgrade your home, you can look for a better premium. The surest way to find what you need is to compare all homeowners insurance quotes-either yourself, or by turning to a free service like NetQuote.com. In some cases, you'll find that upgrades like a new roof, or new wiring, actually save you money in the long run.