Homeowners insurance question

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by DammitJanet, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Has anyone ever attempted to get homeowners insurance after you have been in your home for awhile?

    I guess that is probably a pretty rare question because most people have the insurance just added in while you are paying your loan but I bought my mobile home outright for cash and never put insurance on it at the time I bought it. In fact it simply never occurred to me for a couple of years and by then, I couldnt get it done because my house didnt have either a solid under foundation or underpinning. I didnt want to brick it in because that makes it a permanent structure and the taxes are much higher so I wanted to do just regular underpinning. This past year Tony was able to underpin it with tin which will hold up much better than that vinyl koi that most underpinning is made up of. Cheaper too.

    Do the insurance people have to come out and go in your house to inspect it? Or do they simply look at the outside? I dont mind them looking around outside but heaven knows I dont want anyone coming in here...lol. Also I will have to take my dogs on a little side trip to visit their brother when the insurance folks come because I am not telling them I have bull dogs. Thats an immediate turn down. So are rotties, dobies and german shepherds. They should also put chihuahuas on that list if you ask me.

    If its gonna be too much of a pain I will just not insure the place. I will get Tony to put renters insurance on the contents and be done with it. He doesnt own the place, I do.
  2. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I don't know. Most times you get the insurance when you get the loan because it is required by the mortgage bank. The only way to really find out is to call various insurance companies and ask. We have had shelter insurance and been super happy with them. They are FAR less expensive than many companies, we have great coverage including replacement value which means if something happens we got a sofa instead of the value of the sofa we have minus depreciation costs. This is usually quite expensive but if you have a problem it can really save your bacon.

    They also have our car insurance and the discounts we had were amazing. The prices were cheap to begin with then they piled on discounts for good driving records, no house claims, house and 2 cars, and something else I can't remember. When J turned 16 they called to see if we watned to add her, but were fine when we said no. My parents' company pushed them super hard to put Wiz on their policy even though he wasn't in driver's ed and didn't want to drive yet. My mom actually had to call her lawyer to find out if state law said that he had to be insured just because he was 16 even if he wasn't driving and didn't have his temps or license. She still stayed iwth hte same co, but was shocked when we compared the cost of our insurance and hers. She pays 3 tmes what we do and her house wasn't valued as high as ours at the time because ours was new and hers was not.

    I do know that it does vary for mobile home coverage from place to place, co to co, and state laws do make a difference. But renter's insurance is not a bad idea. Just make SURE that it is legal to qualify for it with Tony as the renter though you live there. WHY? You ask? because if that violates some policy then you will just be out the payments and no claim will be honored no matter what.

    Hope this helps.
  3. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh I know. I have sent out for quotes and I know state farm has told me they do mobile home insurance and they are my car insurance carrier. I am far enough in from the coast so I dont have to worry about the hurricane policy and I am lucky enough to live on a slight hill so I am not in a flood area and I am almost right next door to the fire dept which is good. I noticed they want a fire extinguisher which I can go get. Not that big a deal. Now my fire alarms are supposedly in the house but we took every darn one of them off the walls because the beeped continuously, and I dont know why. I have no idea where the covers are for them either. Probably in the trash. I could go buy stick on ones.

    I just dont want these people in my house. My house isnt fit for humans to inspect. LOL
  4. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Our company had to come and inspect both inside and out. They weren't thrilled with Rowdy and Molly (evidently Big dogs make them nervous too) but since their breeds weren't on the list, it was ok. Smoke detectors are a plus. Reminds me I need to get mine working again. Ought to be interesting for the one upstairs. It's up so d@mn high no one can reach it. But inside......well, our guy just did a basic walk through. He didn't really poke into anything.
  5. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    My company took a look at the outside and the electrical box... But then, I also gave them the home inspection.

    Janet, Wal-Mart has 10-year-battery smoke & heat detectors for like $16 and they are awesome, even when Onyxx smoked in her room (UGH) they never went off. But don't put one in the kitchen... Ours there is very sensitive LOL!
  6. Tiapet

    Tiapet Old Hand

    Janet from what I know from my mother, mobile homes are a pita to get insurance on! Mind you she is in a different state anyhow but still. I'd still look into it if I were you anyway as it can't hurt to learn about it. State Farm is notoriously hard insurance company to work with as far as home owners insurance, just a fyi for you, though they give better rates for combining (like most others) coverages with auto and others. Even though you are inland for hurricanes, you are still in a risk area. As far as flooding, it really doesn't matter if you are higher then a flooding area. You will want to look at the "100 year flood plain" plan online for your area to see if you are in the zone. Chances are you might be surprised to find out you are actually in a flood area and not know it. Even as a renter you will need to know this and be covered as you wouldn't be otherwise. We once were in what we thought wasn't and area to flood and later found out it actually was in a zone to flood.

    Here is one place to check: flood zone map

    Here is a little informative brief that might help you too: FAQ on homeowners insurance for mobile homes in NC

    Please do check into it. When I did a quick google search about it, there are many articles that give lots of information about specifics that I think you will want to know ahead of time before you actually purchase, like questions you may want to ask yourself and have answers to before you call to get a quote, etc. Hope this gives a little bit of help at least. It's really worth having the insurance.
  7. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    Most owner's policies include possessions - and IME - they definitely look inside and out. More to determine replacement cost - like fixtures etc than to look at upkeep. As far as the dogs - please be careful. Lying on the policy is legal grounds for voiding it. Which they won't do until you actually make a claim and then they refund your premiums and void the policy. I might look into some bulldog forums and see if there are dog friendly underwriters out there. They do check up - my friend has a trampoline and was "caught" when the underwriters looked at a satellite picture of her home. She had to get rid of it. Just FWIW.
  8. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    My State Farm guy - I dont know what else to call him because he owns the company where I bought my insurance - gave me a quote for my house when I told him what my tax value was and from that they just determine a replacement cost on belongings. I figured it was fair enough actually. I think the replacement costs for my belongings was around 13K and I do think I could replace just about everything for that if I had to. Of course, what is sentimental cannot be replaced but you cant put a price tag on that anyway. Mostly what I am worried about is hurricanes or fires or even the odd tornado that blows through. I have managed to withstand all the hurricanes but I dont know that I will do it forever.

    The only thing my guy said I had to do was be underpinned with something. I am going to go talk to him this week. I want to be insured before June when the hurricane season starts.
  9. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    We purchased our insurance when we bought the house. However, you can buy insurance at any time for your home. I agree that the renters policy may not e honored since you (the owner) lives there.

    In the case of flood Insurance? It is very very difficult to collect on it anyhow, so just be certain you're not in a flood zone, in which case, they can deny coverage. Also, you are wise to hide the dogs...just hope that a personal injury claim for a dog bite never goes through your insurance.

    Bottom line, ask lots of questions and read the policy closely.
  10. family mum

    family mum New Member

    Sorry, from Canada here, so I have never heard of an ins. co. coming to inspect house except after a claim, but..
    If you do not have a working smoke alarm you will not be covered in case of fire! Here they usually take the evaluation minus the value of the land, add a fixed percentage to cover replacement of contents. You can add on extra features if you need extra coverage for jewellery for example. You should be able to add ins at any time, just the same as if you wanted to switch carriers from one year to the next. Price should be determined by a set list of questions about the structure and dependent on risk zones.
  11. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Im thinking the only thing with the dogs would be if someone sued me for a dog bite and I wont keep a dog that bites. Although Nina seems to have found her Inner Pit Bull since her babies were born...lol. This is the dog who has always run away from every other living thing but now she growls and barks and tries to protect all of us from everyone now! No one better get near her babies or she might bite. Well, Tony, Billy and I can. I think that is just maternal instinct though. Once the pups are gone and she is fixed, I think she will return to my old Nina.
  12. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    We redid ours through AARP just before we moved and saved about 50% on our insurance bill. They just went by our tax records and our (non) record of claims.
  13. Tiapet

    Tiapet Old Hand

    Janet smoke detectors, and even CO2's now I understand if you happen to have a wood stove or fireplace in your house, often are available for FREE from your local fire department for those who income qualify so you might want to check into that as well. Can't hurt and saves you some money too! :)
  14. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Couple of things to think about...
    1) in some parts, a policy for a mobile home or even RTM home, can be different than a "build in place" home - make sure the policy covers mobile homes.
    2) Things like dogs? It's like any other pre-existing risk condition... check around in your area, ask other dog owners what they have experienced etc. - but here, they would simply write a rider into the policy so that the ins. co. isn't covering any damages your dogs do to other people.
    3) what is called "renters insurance" is also sometimes called "contents insurance"; check with your agent. It's possible in some places to get "contents only" insurance, especially if the home is not high-value.
  15. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    We do have a fireplace but rarely use it. We have some of those fake logs that you can buy at the grocery store in a box that we keep in the family room for emergencies in case the power goes out in the winter. Not that it would last very long but we could put blankets up in the doorway of the family room and stay warm for a bit.
  16. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Janet, I totally understand how a smoke detector could drive you nuts. Two weeks after we moved in to this house, one of the wired in smoke detectors went off. It would NOT stop no matter what. It did not have a battery as it was hooked into the electric and even iwth the manual we couldn't stop it. I finally ripped it out of the ceiling. Every frickin one of the dang things did that within a year - and this was a brand new home. We even had an electrician look at the system and they were installed properly. He set one off as a test using the directions for doing just that and then he couldn't get it to stop. I had to rip it out because he wouldn't and that noise, OMW with the sensory problems I have was about to kill me. Really something I just couldn't handle. I put up the stick on kind with the battery and they have worked perfectly.

    Given the smoking, PLEASE go to the fire dept and ask if they give them out. MOst but not all fire depts will do that happily, but they do have a set amt of them they can give away per year, so going earlier is better than later.

    As for insurance, why not shop all the companies to see how much for insurance on both the cars and home at one time? Get every company to give you quotes - most will be delighted. It usually makes FAR more sense to have everything with one company, but not always. So get the amt for just the car, just the house, car and house, and whatever other items you are interested in.

    Whether you get ins or not, please please please PLEASE get smoke detectors!!! I know I am the safety worriwort here, but this is a HUGE worry for me. Ever since I was little, fire alarms have been something that just seem so important and easy to protect the family with. I have done SOOOOOOO many fire safety programs at the kids' schools and have relatives who worked as volunteer firemen, and fire just is NOT something to play around with. The very first chance, get to the store or wherever, and get a firealarm and any needed batteries. Then put it up when you get home, esp around wherever you smoke most often, esp when tired.
  17. Tiapet

    Tiapet Old Hand

    On a side note Janet, not to scare you more, my mom didn't have a smoke detector in a mobile home she was renting years ago (it was really old and the landlord didn't care for it well). She had a fire and the thing went up really, really quick at about 4a. Her and my father we lucky to get out with their lives! They lost everything....everything. No coverage as she never thought she needed insurance and she never thought about the smoke detectors. NOW she does and NOW she has PTSD about the fire that will last the rest of her life. It was a really bad thing. The thing went up like kindling. How do I know? I lived right next door to her at the time in a house and clearly recall when she came panic stricken knocking on my door and how quickly the home was gone, just like that.