Help­ful in­sur­ance tips for home­buy­ers

The Prince George Citizen - The Citizen - Real Estate Weekly - - Real Estate Weekly -

NC)—Sum­mer to-do lists are of­ten filled with road trips, swim­ming pools, va­ca­tion ad­ven­tures and tak­ing in the great out­doors. How­ever, for many Cana­di­ans, the warm-weather sea­son means even big­ger plans – such as buy­ing a new home.

Pur­chas­ing a new prop­erty, es­pe­cially for the first time, presents many ques­tions. Af­ter sep­a­rat­ing the must-haves from the wish list, find­ing a real es­tate agent, and cal­cu­lat­ing how much you can af­ford, get­ting in­sur­ance for the new home is of­ten left to the end, or only con­sid­ered af­ter the pa­pers are signed and the move-in plans are un­der­way.

“The type and lo­ca­tion of the home you buy can have a sig­nif­i­cant im­pact on your in­sur­ance pre­mium,” says Wayne Ross, an in­sur­ance ex­pert at Aviva Canada.“By look­ing at a new home through the eyes of your in­sur­ance com­pany, you could save thou­sands in home in­sur­ance pre­mi­ums.”

Ross of­fers four sim­ple tips to keep in­sur­ance in mind when shop­ping for your dream home:

Ex­plore the lo­ca­tion. Neigh­bour­hoods with lower crime rates, no his­tory of wa­ter dam­age, and close to fire sta­tions are kin­der to your in­sur­ance pre­mi­ums.

Think warm thoughts. Check out the heat­ing sys­tem in­stalled in the home. Oil tanks can cause ex­pen­sive en­vi­ron­men­tal dam­age if they leak, while gas fur­naces and elec­tric heat are much less risky. If you heat with oil, you’ll likely pump more money into your pre­mium.

Some things are bet­ter new. Houses with more re­cent heat­ing, elec­tri­cal and plumb­ing sys­tems are less sus­cep­ti­ble to fire and other dan­gers, and re­sult in lower pre­mi­ums. Also search for an up­dated roof and look for signs of wear and tear.

Ex­am­ine your ex­tras. Adding up­grades such as swim­ming pools or hot tubs can in­crease your chance of li­a­bil­ity – and there­fore your in­sur­ance costs.

More in­for­ma­tion is avail­able from your in­sur­ance bro­ker or at avi­va­

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