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Home Insurance

New York Home Insurance

Insuring your home properly is a big deal, after all, it’s most likely the biggest purchase and asset you will ever have.  Being underinsured or missing vital endorsements on your policy can lead to significant financial pain for the owner in the event of a fire, wind damage, water damage, injuries on the property, along with many others.

Unfortunately, we continue to encounter underinsured policies at an alarming rate. Sometimes it’s because the policy hasn’t been looked at in years or even decades.  Other times its simply that the issuing agent didn’t take the time to ask questions or accurately assess the risks for that particular property. Reconstruction and repair costs have been skyrocketing just as the rate and claim amounts for premises liability claims.

At NY Insurance Hub, we are specialists and pride ourselves on finding the right coverage for your needs while providing quality service and competitive pricing. We have hand picked the carriers that provide the best homeowners insurance in NY to protect you properly, and better yet, give the best rates for virtually any circumstance. We tailor to your needs and risks and run manual quotes to compare amongst our top-rated carriers to zero-in on the best policy option for you.

Vital Components of Your NY Homeowners Insurance

  • Dwelling Coverage– dwelling coverage is the part of your policy that helps to pay for the rebuilding or the repair of the physical structure of your house if it’s damaged by a covered hazard.
  • Personal Property – coverage for your belongings, such as furniture, clothing, sporting goods, household items or electronics, in the event of a covered loss
  • Liability – this will cover if there is a claim when someone is injured or their property is damaged.
  • Medical Expenses – allows for medical payments to others who are injured on your premises. Protects you against liability if a guest is injured at your premises, regardless of who is at-fault.
  • Additional Living Expenses –provides the peace of mind and financial assistance you need in the event you are suddenly displaced from your residence due to a covered loss. It covers expenses you wouldn’t ordinarily have if you were living in your own house, such as temporary housing, boarding a pet, additional travel and food expenses, etc.

We service clients in the Albany, Schenectady, Troy, Latham, Clifton Park, Saratoga Springs, Cohoes, Watervliet areas as well as the entire state of New York. Each one of our clients is given a dedicated expert to work together to proficiently address all your concerns.

Best New York Homeowners Insurance Endorsements You May Want On Your Policy

Extended replacement cost is something we like to say gives the insured a “buffer” or added layer of protection in the event your house becomes a total loss from a covered peril and has to be rebuilt. It increases the replacement cost policy dwelling limit by anywhere from 10% to 50% depending on specific company limit options. For example, say you have your dwelling coverage limit at $400,000 with extended replacement that will pay up to 150% to rebuild your house. Your insurer would then reimburse up to $600,000 on a rebuild after total loss.

You might be asking if this coverage is important? Yes, it is important to have this “just in case” protection in the event that your initial and subsequent replacement cost estimates are inaccurate to the low side or the cost of labor and materials in your area has experienced a recent and significant increase. The Covid 19 pandemic is a perfect example of this, though there are many. Due to multiple factors causing building supply shortages, the price of lumber and materials skyrocketed in New York State at up to 6 times higher than the pre-pandemic low! At the same time, construction labor also increased significantly. During this period, having your dwelling insured at only 100% of its replacement cost estimate initiated prior to the pandemic, would have been a big risk to the property owner, potentially having to pay 10’s to 100’s of thousands of dollars out of pocket to have their house rebuilt to its original state.

Some carriers also offer Guaranteed Replacement Cost protection, meaning that a house that has to be rebuilt after a total loss due to a covered peril will be replaced to its original state regardless of the price. Even if the cost is double or more. Of course, this is the best replacement cost protection you can get.
An often overlooked and very important protection for your NY homeowners insurance is the Building Ordinance or Law Endorsement, particularly for older dwellings. If a covered loss requires additional costs to repair or rebuild due to local building code specifications, this endorsement will reimburse the property owner for the “upgrade” charges. It pertains to the demolishing, repairing or rebuilding of a structure. Keep in mind that dwellings built decades ago without recent updates usually will not pass current building code requirements.

For example, relating to a partial loss. Say you have a large tree fall on your house after a wind storm and damages 30 percent of the roof which needs to be replaces. Wind is a named peril under your policy so the claim is covered. But your town building code requires the entire roof to be replaced when 30 percent or more of the roof is damaged and your insurance policy only replaces the entire roof if 50 percent or more is damaged. Without law or ordinance protection the insurance company will pay 30 percent and the property owner is on the hook for the remaining 70% of the total roof cost.

It’s important to note the ordinance or law endorsements are offered in different percentage limits depending on the insurer and are measured as a percentage of the home’s dwelling limit. Common limits are 10%, 25%, and 50% of dwelling limit while a few offer 100% protection. For instance, if you have your house insured for $300,000 with a 10% ordinance endorsement, you have $30,000 in ordinance protection.

Now let’s look at a total loss example and the reason why you might want to have more than 10% ordinance protection. Say your home’s insured at $400,000 and you have a fire that destroys 50 percent of your house while 50 percent remains undamaged. Your insurance will pay for the cost to repair or replace the damaged part of the building. Because 50 percent of the dwelling is destroyed, your city building code requires that the entire structure be torn down before it can be rebuilt. The cost to rebuild, including demolition and debris removal is $400,000. Without ordinance protection, your insurer will pay only $200,000 which would put most people into a very bad financial predicament. What would you do? If you carried 10% ordinance protection, that’s only $40,000 and not enough to help in any meaningful manner. If you had a 50% or more limit, the entire cost would be paid for by the insurer. Yes, it’s a very important endorsement to carry at a sufficient percentage of your dwelling limit.

Below are some common examples of updates your house might need as it pertains to current building
code requirements:

  • New wiring
  • New Fire safety updates
  • New plumbing
  • New roofing
  • New means of egress
    Your policy or home insurance quote should specify where or not ordinance is included and at what percentage it applies.
This is another very important protection that should be strongly considered for inclusion to your NY home insurance policy. Water backup will protect you in the event that water backs up through drains or sewers or even an overflow from a sump pump or other water removal device. It will pay for damage to both your dwelling and personal property. Items such as water removal, personal property damage, materials and labor for repair and replacement of any structural damage.

We often hear from prospective new customers that they’ve never had a water backup issue and don’t need the endorsement, a common misconception. In fact, almost everyone is susceptible to incurring a water backup loss.

Common causes of water flowing back into your home include:

  • Old or damaged sewer lines and drains
  • Sump pump malfunction or overflow
  • Municipal pipeline blockage
  • Overgrowth of tree roots
  • House gutters malfunction
  • Severe rain storm overflow
Water damage caused by a flood is not covered under this endorsement, a separate flood policy would need to be purchased. Also, if water damage is caused by neglect or maintenance issues, the claim will most likely be denied.

The typical home insurance policy does not include water backup protection but can be added at set limits from $5,000 up to $50,000 and more depending on the carrier. The average cost is typically anywhere between $25 to $200 per year depending on the limit carried.

Even if you feel you do not need water backup added to your policy, we suggest adding it to your homeowners insurance quote so that you can more accurately assess the risk versus reward. You very well may find that the price is actually quite inexpensive as compared to the averages cost of repairs from water backups.
Most homeowners have at least one type of underground service line to transport water, waste, electricity, natural gas, fiber optics, cable, internet and more. In most cases, the property owner is responsible for maintaining the lines from their dwelling to the street. Leaks, ruptures, and collapse in these lines can bring about very expensive repairs.

Unfortunately, standard NY home insurance policies do not cover underground service line repair or replacement which could lead you to paying thousands in repairs out of your pocket. But fortunately this added coverage is a great value endorsement costing as little as $25 per year for a $10,000 coverage depending on the carrier and you can get limits up to $25,000.

Although the service line endorsement varies from insurer to insurer, here are some of the more typical perils covered:

  • Weight of vehicles, animals or people
  • Collapse
  • Rust, deterioration, corrosion and decay
  • Damage caused by tree roots
  • Freezing
  • Mechanical breakdown

    Septic systems are not covered.

    It’s important to note that not all NY insurance companies offer service line coverage as an add-on to their standard homeowners policy, but you should seriously consider it, especially for the price. Be sure to check your current policy to see if you currently have this protection and if not, get a homeowners insurance quote with this endorsement included for at least a $10,000 limit.
We service clients in the Albany, Schenectady, Troy, Latham, Clifton Park, Saratoga Springs, Cohoes, Watervliet areas as well as the entire state of New York. Each one of our clients is given a dedicated expert to work together to proficiently address all your concerns.

Bundle Discounts – Choosing the Best NY Home Insurance Company

There may also be other coverages that you may want to consider in addition to your basic homeowners policy. These may include, automobile, personal umbrella, motorcycle, RV, boat, among others. We have access to companies that offer the best bundle discounts and make them available to you.

Our agents at NY Insurance Hub can help you understand your other risks and help you evaluate whether you may need additional coverages in your New York home insurance plan.

Here are some additional lines that we service:

  • High Value Houses
  • Rental Dwellings
  • Secondary Residences

So, contact us today at 518-783-0105 to find out more about your options.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for New York Homeowners Insurance

There is no “one” best company as it depends upon your specific qualifying scenario. Factors such as house age, location, dwelling limit amount, credit rating, number of prior claims, alarm systems, fire zone rating, and bundle discounts all figure into the final quote premium amount. Company A may be great with monoline policies for older houses in unprotected fire zones, while Company B may be the best for newer high value houses for people with an excellent credit rating. Company C may be the best for average age residences when the bundle discount is applied and on and on. That is why we work with each quote as a unique opportunity and manually quote with the top companies for that specific scenario of qualifying factors.
We will never guarantee the absolute best proposal, but we do guarantee to put our best effort forth and manually rate with our targeted companies for your specific qualifying factors. We have an excellent track record and often save clients up to 50% on their policies. We do this without sacrificing coverage and commonly upgrade protections while still saving customers up to 50%. Our number one goal with every quote opportunity is to find the lowest cost option that provides the protection you need and deserve, while educating you on the most important aspects of your policy.
Absolutely not. In fact, we do not charge our customers at all for our services, and certainly not for a quote. Our compensation comes from the companies that we write for, and we’re paid the same as every other agency whether we spend 1 minute or 2 hours working with a client. In a greater sense, we do make out better by spending extra time with our customers and building relationships with them because we get a lot of referrals for new clients, and our interactions are like talking with friends and family. We simply care about our people and want to make sure they are taken care of.
We pride ourselves on conducting a thorough and comprehensive quote process with quick turnaround times. Even though we manually quote for your house and for most personal lines products, such as auto, umbrella, motorcycle, boat, and RV’s it’s same day service and we can even issue policies that same day. Once the best quote option is determined, we like to review the quote with you and answer any questions you might have.
You never have to come to the office. In fact, most of our interactions are done over the phone, although we love meeting people in-person if convenient for you.
No. We make the process as easy as possible for you. In most cases, it’s really as simple as taking payment and emailing the application for you to e-sign, and that’s it. We even prepare and send the cancellations to your current insurer for you. If it’s a new purchase, we’ll work with your lender and provide the documents needed for your loan closing. We provide same day service if necessary.
Yes. Your new company will simply replace the old one. Sometimes when a policy’s premium is paid in escrow, the insured’s don’t pay much attention to the renewals because there’s not a drastic change in their monthly mortgage payment each year. When they do ultimately take a look at their renewal a few years later, they notice that the premium has increased significantly, sometimes over 50% or more. It really does pay to check your renewal each year when in escrow, you could be paying hundreds more than you should be.
Yes. In fact, we place a large percentage of our customers in to bundles that include auto, home, umbrella, renters, and motorcycle products to take advantage of the significant bundle discounts available. The price isn’t the only benefit of a bundle. Having multiple policies with the same carrier makes it so much easier for you to manage your payments, retrieve policy documents, and centralizes your point of contact for any customer service inquiries.
We use building reconstruction cost estimators inputting your house’s characteristics that we obtain from our conversation with you and also from our research of the online property data and records for your house. Items such as construction type, build model, exterior features, roof type, basement, along with multiple interior features of the kitchen, cabinets, floors, doors, wall structures, etc. The data input is run through a calculator that takes the area’s cost of materials and labor into account and derives a final estimated cost of reconstruction for your house including an amount for demolition and debris removal. The estimated cost of reconstruction is the figure we use as your dwelling limit. From here, and depending on the NY insurance company we are using, an additional amount, or extension is added to your limit. This extension can be from 25% of your dwelling limit all the way up to “Guaranteed” replacement cost no matter how much it costs to rebuild your house after a total loss. Dwelling limit extensions are crucial, particularly in times when the cost of building materials and labor rise rapidly due to events that cause shortages in the area in which you live.
Yes. We utilize several carriers that do not consider or run a consumer credit report. Premiums are much lower than the standard companies that utilize consumer credit ratings in their pricing.
You’d be surprised at how many water issues occur from clogged gutters, so regularly cleaning them out is advisable. Also make sure to run your sump pump every couple months to make sure it’s ready for any sudden overflow. Raising appliances and electrical equipment up off the floor can help to keep overflow water from damaging them. Simply using waterproof storage containers can protect items stored in your basement. There are also new smart home devices that can detect leaks in pipes, allow for remote water shut off if you’re away from your house, and some that can alert you to any changes in the temperature and humidity of your dwelling.

Contact Us Today to speak with one of our trusted agents about your NY Home Insurance Options & answer any questions you may have and provide you with a quote.