Will Filing A Claim Raise My Rates?

Many homeowners are concerned that filing a claim will raise there insurance rates.  This is definitely not the case.  After all, the reason we pay homeowners insurance is to protect us against loss of our most valuable investment, our home.  Therefore, the insurance company does not raise your rates for using the very service you are paying for.  Raising your rates for filing a claim would be equivalent to paying your car payment, and the monthly amount going up because you drove it…

The following is an article from Insure.com, we invite you to log on to there website for some great insurance related information.

By www.Insure.com

One company laughed at the thought of premiums going up because a homeowner filed a single claim. When it comes to auto insurance, filing a claim can have serious repercussions because your insurance company might jack up your premium the next time you renew. But what happens when you file that first homeowners claim? Will your premiums skyrocket or stay the same?

According to insurance companies, nothing happens. One company’s representative even laughed at the thought of premiums going up because a homeowner filed a single claim. Spokespersons for many of the 10 largest homeowners companies went out of their way to stress this: “A single claim, almost regardless of its size or type, won’t raise premiums.” And what insurance companies are saying seems to hold true in practice. Bob Hunter, the Consumer Federation of America’s insurance expert, confirms, “One claim won’t trigger a price increase.”

One state department of insurance spokesperson says, “It’s almost unheard of for a single claim to raise premiums, especially if it is an act of God.” Act of God refers to an event caused entirely by the forces of nature. One significant exception is a dog bite claim. Insurance companies will almost always raise rates or refuse to renew a policy if a homeowner has filed a dog-bite claim and then done nothing to lower their risk. (For more on problems with dog-bite claims, see Home insurance for dog lovers.)

How many claims does it take to get an increase? The next natural question is, “Well, how many claims does it take before getting hit with a rate hike?” The answer is not surprising: Two. Multiple, similar claims, such as slip-and-falls, can make the red flags go up.State Farm spokesperson Phil Supple explains: “If you’ve been with State Farm for nine years or more, and you have fewer than two claims in a three-year period, you’ll still receive a 15 percent discount. Once you get to two, you’ll start to lose your discount, or if you haven’t been with State Farm for as long as nine years, you’ll start to see your premiums increase.” Supple was quick to point out that State Farm doesn’t hold a grudge when it comes to a weather-related or catastrophic claim. So, if a tornado rips through your house, at least you won’t have to worry about your homeowners premiums going up.

This nonweather, noncatastrophe qualifier is typical of other home insurers. Many insurers realize that the homeowner could not have taken any action to prevent the incident from happening. However, insurers are concerned with homeowners who file claims because of damage caused by faulty plumbing and then don’t make the proper repairs and file another, similar claim. In situations like this, insurers will look at you very carefully when it comes to renewal time. Another situation your insurer might look at quite closely is that of multiple “slip-and-fall” claims.

In the end, you shouldn’t worry about filing a claim on your homeowners insurance. If leaky plumbing ruins your finished basement, getting the money to repair the damage is going to far outweighany potential increase in premiums. However, what is important is making sure you make the proper repairs so that a similar incident won’t happen again.