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What's Really Covered By Your Home Insurance: An Interview with Amy L. Delgado of Safeguard Insurance Agency

By Amy L. Delgado

Tell us a little bit about your company and the services you offer.

Our company offers a multitude of products for home & auto insurance. Because we have multiple companies we can offer a wider range of competitive options. For example we could write auto with one company and home or renters with another. Whatever we can do to save our clients the most money. We also do our best to keep our clients happy because we are a hometown business we provide a friendly comfortable atmosphere. To us it's all about the relationship!

Can you briefly describe what an example of bare minimum home insurance coverage would be like?

Minimum house insurance could be a market value. This would provide bare bones coverage. It would not provide replacement cost on contents, or replacement cost on the home. It is not replacement cost! It is a good option for older homes in rural areas that you would never intend on replacing.

What are some important things that would not be covered in that example?

Everything is based on actual cash value. An example of actual cash value is if you bought a couch 5 years ago, you would get the value of a 5 year old couch due to 5 years of wear and tear. It would not replace the couch at today's price or the home.

What is replacement cost coverage and how does it potentially help homeowners?

Replacement cost is when the item or the home is not depreciated for wear and tear. For example the 5 year old couch you just lost due to a covered peril would not be depreciated because of wear and tear. It would be replace with a brand new coach similar to the one you lost. Same with the home, if you lost your home due to a covered peril, it would be rebuilt to your policy limits on your declaration page.

Can you talk about any other replacement cost specifics?

Another example of replacement cost on contents is say a burglar steals your 6 year old television set. With the actual cash value coverage, you only would get what a 6 year old television set would sell for in today's market. Which we all know with today's technology is not much. Replacement cost would replace that item with a brand new similar set as the one stolen.

How is the deductible typically calculated with replacement cost? What about in the case of a flood, using flood insurance?

Your deductible always applies. The reason for a deductible is to eliminate small claims and to keep your policy premium down. The higher the deductible the lower your annual premium would be. As for flood insurance a deductible would also always apply for the same reasons.

Do you have any tips for homeowners who may have a limited budget for homeowners insurance?

The best advice I can give anybody on homeowners insurance is to maintain your property to the best of your ability. Homeowners insurance is more for a catastrophic loss not maintenance. Lastly Insurance score is key. This is based on your credit score. The higher the credit score the lower your premium should be.

What's the best way for people to contact you and your company?

If you want more information you can stop by our office and pick up a copy of our book "Informed and Insured" written by our agency owner Scott Metiva. Safeguard Insurance Agency located at 3214 Fashion Square Blvd, Saginaw MI 989-799-4800 and 3065 Davenport Ave, Saginaw MI 989-799-4900. Check out our website here: www.saginawinsuranceagency.com.

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