Hazard insurance when you buy a home is a must. It covers fire, flood, wind, lightning, and the occasional tree falling on your house. But there are some things that could change (ie, increase) the price of your New Orleans home insurance. They are worth researching before you make an offer, but should definitely be addressed during your due diligence period.
What should you consider before making an offer on a home?
Is there a circuit breaker box or does that old house still have fuses? While either one can safely deliver electricity, many insurers will either charge a premium for fuse boxes or just flat out refuse to insure the property.
Are there more than 3 steps up to the front porch? Then there better be a handrail and railings too or the insurance company won’t issue a policy.
Is there a pool? If so, look for a fence around it as well and check to be sure that the gates lock.
Insurance companies are in the business of minimizing risk, so anything that looks like a risk means they will either increase the premiums or opt not to insure.
Yes, that detached garage is great. So is a pool house. Or a guest house. Or any other accessory unit that’s not attached to the house. But they will likely require an additional insurance policy because they aren’t part of the main structure. This can blow your insurance budget if the replacement cost of that accessory unit is high.
If you’re buying an investment property, your New Orleans home insurance agent will need to know that you don’t intend to live there. Coverage is different for rental units since you don’t have to insure the contents (that’s the tenant’s responsibility).
Short term rental properties
Properties being used for short term rentals (AirBnB, VRBO, etc) must carry additional liability insurance, so check these rates during your due diligence period. The last thing you want is for someone to slip and fall and you find out that you aren’t adequately insured. Or, worse, you aren’t insured at all because you didn’t let your agent know what you planned to do with the property. Here’s also where we tell you not to be that person illegally using a property for short term rentals. It’s a touchy subject in New Orleans and your new neighbors will more than likely report you.
A reminder about flood insurance
Remember, flood coverage is not included in your homeowner’s insurance, so don’t skip that step of the process.
Need help finding your next home? Call us at 504-327-5303 today and we’ll get you started in the right direction.