How much you’ll pay for insurance varies in part on your location but also in part on the age of your home. The average annual homeowners’ insurance premium is $1,200. That can seem like a huge expense, but knowing you’ll be reimbursed if anything happens to your most valuable investment can be priceless. Here are some ideas to keep your homeowners’ insurance costs as low as possible:

Do Your Research

Home insurance helps cover the cost of your home and its contents if they’re damaged or destroyed. Getting the right coverage is important, as you’ll likely be responsible for any costs not covered by your policy. Before you purchase a policy, ensure you understand what’s covered and what isn’t.

Ask your neighbors, friends, and other acquaintances if they have home insurance. If you live close to people who share similar lifestyles (similar sizes of homes), consider their advice when it comes time to buy your policy.

Keep in Touch with Your Insurance Agent Every Year

The longer you have insurance, the more likely it is that you will have coverage changes or an increase in premiums. This is why it is important to review your home insurance policy on an annual basis. Make sure you are still getting all of the coverage you paid for when you initially applied for the policy.

Claim Every Discount

Insurance for your home is one of the smartest investments you can make, but this doesn’t mean paying the highest premium. It’s important to get every available discount to lower your rates. When you call your insurer regarding your home insurance policy, ask about any discounts you might qualify for.

Increase the Deductible Amount

A higher deductible (the damage costs you must pay before your insurance kicks in) reduces your monthly premium by a few dollars a month. The higher the deductible, the smaller your monthly payment will be. In most states, your deductible isn’t determined by what kind of dwelling you have or even how much it is worth. It’s based mostly on your homeowner’s policy premium.

Explore Flood Insurance

It’s not necessary to live in a flood zone to experience flood damage; this kind of weather event often causes the most destruction to homes that aren’t protected. While home insurance won’t cover flood damage, flood insurance may be required by your mortgage lender and is well worth the price for complete coverage.