Long Island New York Homeowners Insurance – Frequently Asked Questions
By Insurance Suffolk Brokerage
“What types of homeowners insurance policies do you write?”
We write all personal homeowners policy types including homeowners insurance, condominium insurance, renters insurance, and landlords insurance. We also provide high value homeowners insurance solutions for high net worth individuals from top rated insurance companies such as Chartis, Chubb and Fireman's Fund. Contact us for more information about these programs.
“What insurance company do you work for?”
We do not work for an insurance company as we are not insurance agents. We are an insurance brokerage.
“What is the difference between a homeowners insurance agent and a broker?”
A homeowners insurance agent is employed with the company they represent (e.g. Allstate, State Farm, Liberty Mutual) and can ONLY sell products from their respective company. A homeowners insurance broker is either independent or works for an independent agency. Since homeowners insurance brokers are not employed by any particular insurance company, clients are offered more choices for coverage due to the numerous carrier relationships they have available to them.
“What homeowners insurance companies do you work with?”
We work with numerous, top rated insurance companies in New York to ensure competitive pricing and quality coverage. Our relationships include Travelers, Merchants, Mercury, Ocean Harbor, The Hartford, AARP, New York Central Mutual, Kingstone, and more.
“What information do I need to give you to quote me for homeowners insurance?”
Many factors go into underwriting an individual for homeowners insurance. Information we will need to quote you for coverage is as follows:
- – If presently insured, a copy of your existing homeowners insurance declarations (to provide you with pound-for-pound quotes)
- – If you do not presently have homeowners insurance, we will need: The named insured’s to be listed on the policy, and if applicable, the loss payee clause from your mortgage company (can be found in your loan documentation)
- – Details about your home. This includes the square footage, year of construction, number of rooms, number of bathrooms, outside structures, protective devices, and other specifics that all play a part in determining your rate
- – Personal information for all named insured’s. This includes: Your DOB, and your SSN
“Why do I need to provide my social security number for a homeowners insurance quote?”
It is not mandatory you provide this information but since homeowners insurance companies now generate an “insurance score” based on your credit information as part of their underwriting requirements, many carriers will not quote you without this information. For the few carriers that will quote you without your SSN, you will not receive the best rates available to you. Thus, it is to your advantage that you provide your SSN to your broker when shopping for homeowners insurance.
Even your present homeowners insurance company has used your SSN in part to generate your renewal premiums, which they also must disclose in your policy documentation. Check it out for yourself…it’s in there.
“Does my home need to be inspected once I am written with a homeowners insurance policy?”
Yes. An inspector will be sent to your home to perform an external inspection of the property once you are bound to coverage. There is no charge to the policyholder for this as inspectors are hired by the insurance companies. *Note* For higher valued homes, occasionally, an interior inspection may be required by the carrier.
“Do you charge a broker fee for your services?”
No. We are paid the same way insurance agents are paid…from an insurance company.
“Why did my homeowners insurance rate from my present company go up so much?”
There are many reasons why this could have happened. Claims history, payment timeliness, insurance scores (credit), policy cancellation/reinstatements will all play a role in determining your homeowners policy renewal costs. However, every homeowners insurance company prices their policies differently, which is why you should always shop around for coverage.
“Why was I dropped from my homeowners insurance company? I never even had any claims.”
“Is there anything else I can do to keep my homeowners insurance premiums as low as possible?”
Some homeowners insurance companies simply no longer want to write certain risks. We see a lot of this on Long Island…especially with homes that are close to tidal waters. (e.g. bays, canals, and rivers that flow into bays)
- – You can optionally shop your auto insurance with us in an attempt to place all policies with one company. Insurance companies offer multi-policy discounts so take advantage of it!
- – Be patient. A good homeowners insurance broker (one that put their client’s interest first) will thoroughly investigate all of your options before quoting you