How Do Local Resources Impact Home Insurance Rates?

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  • Over the past several years a number of major disasters that have hit various parts of the country have likely increased the home insurance costs for millions of Americans. However, what many of those people might not know is that their costs are, in some ways, impacted by the access they might have to emergency services in their area. The more agents can do to explain this type of situation to consumers, the better off they may be in terms of being able to keep their view as high as possible.

    In Colorado, a number of people in the city of Divide might have recently gotten good news that will likely have a strong positive impact on their home insurance rates, according to a report from the Colorado Springs Gazette. While the city has just two fire houses serving an area of roughly 100 square miles, Divide has made efforts to improve its protection rating. That, in turn, reduced the risk of severe damage from a fire significantly, and could translate to lower rates for residents.

    A closer look
    Only 150 departments in all of Colorado have a rating of 4 or better (on a scale of 1-10 in which a 1 is the best possible), the report said. Divide’s all-volunteer department is now in that group, bringing their number down from a 6. And given how much of a driver of insurance claims fire tends to be in Colorado, this can be hugely important to residents who might be looking to save a little more money on their home insurance policies down the road.

    “Anything that brings you under a 5 is very positive,” Carole Walker, executive director of the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association, told the newspaper. “Rates don’t automatically go down, but 
insurance companies do look at that.”

    One of the biggest issues consumers often face these days is the fact that they often just don’t understand what goes into their plans; that often includes what they do and don’t cover, as well as what impacts their rates and liabilities. For these reasons, agents might want to try to make a little more effort to explain the ins and outs of coverage, and what their clients can potentially do to lower their risk and premiums. Doing so is likely to both raise their customer satisfaction ratings, as well as their retention rates going forward.