"Smart" Home Discounts

Written By
Zach C
Posted
May 27, 2021

Why Consider Smart Home Discounts?

No one likes how your home insurance premium increases after yet another year of claims-free coverage with your current carrier.

The average homeowner’s insurance premium increased by 3.1% from 2018 to 2019 without broadening the scope of coverage.

Regardless of claims or changes in underlying exposures, increasing premiums are often unavoidable.

However, there are many small things you can do to be eligible for discounts that may dramatically decrease your premium. One such discount offered by most home insurance carriers is the smart home discount. Also known as a “protective device discount,” the smart home discount will typically reduce your premium by 5%-20%.  

How Do I Know if I Qualify?

The range of qualifying systems will vary from carrier to carrier. Below is a list of the most common smart devices carriers will ask for when determining eligibility for a smart home discount.  

  • Wireless Security Systems – Burglar and fire alarms are the most common home systems eligible for discounts. The degree of sophistication of these alarm systems can also impact the premium discount percentage. A system that notifies a police station or call center directly when an alarm in the house is triggered will garner the steepest discounts amongst carriers. Other alarms that simply ring inside the home may also help lower your premium, so be sure to disclose these types of systems to your insurance agent if you have them.
  • Video Doorbells – Doorbells such as the Amazon Ring have gained popularity in recent years. These “smart devices” capture real-time video and connect wirelessly to your internet. They usually allow for two-way communication and can be integrated with a more robust security apparatus.  
  • Smart Smoke Detectors – Insurance companies will give a credit towards your premium if the smoke detectors in your home connect to Wi-Fi and send automatic notifications to you or your local fire department.  
  • Water/Gas Sensors – Smart water and gas sensors can sync with your phone and notify you of any leaks or flooding in your critical utility systems. Some will allow you to turn the gas/water off directly from your phone. Some types of smart home water/gas sensors can automatically shut off feed lines when a leak is detected, reducing the severity of the damage if a leak should occur. In addition to this providing peace of mind, Insurance companies consider these types of water sensors particularly valuable since water claims are the second most filed claim in the United States.  

What Else Can I Do to save?

Unfortunately, with ever increasing construction costs, general inflation, and other actuarial factors, insurance premiums aren’t going to stop increasing anytime soon. That is why taking a holistic look at all possible discounts is so important.

When combining all available smart home discounts, some carriers claim to discount as much as 30% off the initial premium!

If you already have these smart devices, or aren’t in a position to install them, there may still be other ways to save. Make sure to ask your agent to find you a carrier that can offer the most discounts for your specific circumstance. Some common discounts to ask your agent for include: multipolicy, longtime policy holder, mortgage free, senior citizen, and first-time home buyer discounts. Lastly, if you have exhausted all possible discounts the two best ways to lower your premium may be to increase your deductible(s) or re-shop with a new insurance carrier.

About the Author
Zach C
Zach doesn't like to be pressed on creative signatures, he'd rather to take his time to identify it
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