Call us at (239) 596-6226 for a quote on your Naples homeowners insurance!
Buying the right homeowners insurance policy isn't as easy as it used to be. Some companies offer better coverage than others, some exclude or limit things you would expect to be covered, and some companies are so small you wonder if they can survive a major storm. We are a family owned independent insurance agency that has been serving Naples residents since 1992. Let us guide you through the various types of policies and options available to you so that you get the coverage that you need at an affordable price.
As a full service independent insurance agency we represent a number of homeowners insurance companies including Nationwide Insurance (renters), Bankers Insurance Group (homeowners, condo, dwelling fire), Tower Hill (homeowners, condo, dwelling fire), Citizens Insurance (homeowners, condo, dwelling fire), St. Johns Insurance Company (homeowners, condo), Olympus Insurance (homeowners, condo, dwelling fire), Universal Property & Casualty Insurance Company (Homeowners, condo, dwelling fire), Federated National Insurance (homeowners, condo, renters), Royal Palm Insurance (homeowners), United Property & Casualty Insurance (homeowners), and many more.
If your homeowners insurance is being cancelled, if you are reviewing your current homeowners policy's coverages and rates, or if you are new to the area and looking for a Naples insurance agent, please give us a call at (239) 596-6226!
How much homeowners insurance do I need? You need enough insurance to cover the following:
You need enough insurance to cover the cost of rebuilding your home at current construction costs. Don't include the cost of the land. And don't base your rebuilding costs on the price you paid for your home. The cost of rebuilding could be more or less than the price you paid or could sell it for today.
Some banks require you to buy homeowners insurance to cover the amount of your mortgage. If the limit of your insurance policy is based on your mortgage, make sure it's enough to cover the cost of rebuilding. (If your mortgage is paid off, don't cancel your homeowners policy. Homeowners insurance protects your investment in your home.)
For a quick estimate of the amount of insurance you need, multiply the total square footage of your home by local building costs per square foot. To find out construction costs in Naples, Marco Island, Bonita Springs, Estero, or Ft. Myers give us a call. We have a number of replacement cost estimators that are used by most of the major insurance carriers. A lot of homeowners policies have built in inflation guards that index the amount of insurance you are buying. It's possible that your home is over insured and that you are paying too much.
These are some of the factors that will determine the cost of rebuilding your home:
Standard homeowners policies provide coverage for disasters such as damage due to fire, lightning, hail, explosions and theft. They do not cover floods, earthquakes or damage caused by lack of routine maintenance.
Replacement cost policies.
Most policies cover replacement cost for damage to the structure. A replacement cost policy pays for the repair or replacement of damaged property with materials of similar kind and quality. There is no deduction for depreciation -- the decrease in value due to age, wear and tear, and other factors.
If you purchase a flood insurance policy, coverage for the structure is available on a replacement cost basis.
Guaranteed or extended replacement cost coverage.
After a major hurricane or a tornado, building materials and construction workers are often in great demand. This can push rebuilding costs above homeowners policy limits, leaving you without enough money to cover the bill. To protect against such a situation, you can buy a policy that pays more than the policy limits.
An extended replacement cost policy will pay an extra 20 percent or more above the limits, depending on the insurance company. A guaranteed replacement cost policy will pay whatever it costs to rebuild your home as it was before the fire or other disaster.
Building codes are updated periodically and may have changed significantly since your home was built. If your home is badly damaged, you may be required to rebuild your home to meet new building codes. Generally, homeowners insurance policies (even a guaranteed replacement cost policy) won't pay for the extra expense of rebuilding to code. In Florida, an Ordinance or Law endorsement that pays either 25% or 50% of the amount of your building insurance is available to help cover these additional costs. (An endorsement is a form attached to an insurance policy that changes what the policy covers.)
An inflation guard clause automatically adjusts the dwelling limit when you renew your policy to reflect current construction costs in your area.
If you own an older home, you may not be able to buy a replacement cost policy. Instead, you may have to buy a modified replacement cost policy. This means that instead of repairing or replacing features typical of older homes, like plaster walls and wooden floors, with similar materials, the policy will pay for repairs using the standard building materials and construction techniques in use today.
Insurance companies differ greatly in how they insure older homes. Some won't insure older homes for the replacement cost because of the expense of re-creating special features like wall and ceiling moldings and carvings. Other companies will insure older homes for the replacement cost as long as the dwelling is in good condition.
If you can't insure your home for the replacement cost or choose not to do so -- in some cases, the cost of replacing a large old home is so high that you might not want to replace it with a house of the same size -- make sure the limits of the policy are high enough to provide you with a house of acceptable size and quality.
Your personal possessions
Most homeowners insurance policies provide coverage for your personal possessions for approximately 50% to 75% of the amount of insurance you have on the structure or “dwelling” of your home. The limits of the policy typically appear on the Declarations Page under Section I, Coverages, A. Dwelling.
To determine if this is enough coverage, you need to conduct a home inventory. This is a detailed list of everything you own and information related to the cost to replace these items if they were stolen or destroyed by a disaster such as a fire. If you think you need more coverage, contact your agent or insurance company representative and ask for higher limits for your personal possessions.
Replacement Cost or Actual Cash Value.
A cash value policy pays the cost to replace your belongings minus depreciation. A replacement cost policy, on the other hand, reimburses you for the cost to replace the item.
Suppose, for example, a fire destroys a 10-year-old TV set in your living room. If you have a replacement cost policy for the contents of your home, the insurance company will pay to replace the TV set with a new one. If you have an actual cash value policy, it will pay only a percentage of the cost of a new TV set because the TV has been used for 10 years and is worth a lot less than its original cost. Some replacement cost policies also replace the item and deliver it to you.
Generally, the price of replacement cost coverage is about 10% more than actual cash value. If you need a flood insurance policy, you can purchase flood insurance for your belongings. It is only available, however, on an actual cash value basis.
Insuring expensive items with floaters/endorsements.
If the limits are too low, consider buying a special personal property floater or an endorsement. These allow you to insure these items individually or as a collection. You are charged a premium based on what the item (or collection) is, where you live and its dollar value.
You can determine the value by providing your agent with a recent receipt or getting the item or collection appraised.
Additional living expenses after a disaster
This is a very important feature of a standard homeowners insurance policy. This pays the additional costs of temporarily living away from your home if you can't live in it due to a fire, severe storm or other insured disaster. It covers hotel bills, restaurant meals and other living expenses incurred while your home is being rebuilt.
Coverage for additional living expenses differs from company to company. Many policies provide coverage for about 10% - 20% of the insurance on your house. You should talk to your agent or company to make sure you know exactly how much coverage you have and how long the coverage will be in effect.
Liability to others
This part of your policy covers you against lawsuits for bodily injury or property damage that you or family members cause to other people. It also pays for damage caused by pets. It pays for both the cost of defending you in court and for any damages a court rules you must pay.
Generally, most homeowners insurance policies provide a minimum of $100,000 worth of liability insurance, but higher amounts are available. Increasingly, it is recommended that homeowners consider purchasing at least $300,000 to $500,000 worth of coverage of liability protection.
Umbrella or Excess Liability.
You should buy enough liability insurance to protect your assets. If you own property and or have investments and savings that are worth more than the liability limits in your policy, you may consider purchasing an excess liability or umbrella policy.
Umbrella or excess liability policies provide extra coverage. They start to pay after you have used up the liability insurance in your underlying home (or auto) policy. An umbrella policy is not part of your homeowners policy. You have to purchase it separately. In addition to providing a higher dollar amount, they offer broader coverage. Some umbrellas offer coverage for libel, slander, and invasion of privacy. These things are not covered under standard homeowners or auto policies.
The cost of an umbrella policy depends on how much underlying insurance you have and the kind of risk you represent. The greater the underlying liability coverage, the cheaper the policy. This is because you would be the less likely to need the additional insurance. Most companies will require a minimum of $300,000 on your home and your car, if you own one.
With Permission © Insurance Information Institute, Inc. - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED -
Our Contact Information
Olson & DiNunzio Insurance Agency, Inc.
Let us be the one Naples independent insurance agency you turn to for:
These are some of the companies we proudly represent: