How to shop around for homeowner’s insurance

HOUSTON – After the winter storm, people are unfortunately more familiar with home insurance and what is and is not covered in their policies.

Some people are now actively researching and doing homework about home insurance and possibly switching carriers.

Before you switch, some insurance companies plan to raise rates over the next couple of months.

If you’re looking to make a change, how do you decide between all the companies?

Cost

A big factor is the cost.

KPRC2 Investigates got the data from the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) about which companies are getting ready to raise their rates in March 2021 for new policies. These numbers are for the average across Texas.

  • Southern Vanguard Insurance will increase 4.7%.
  • American Economy Insurance will increase 8.6%.
  • Chubbs Lloyds Insurance Company of Texas will increase 17.8%.
  • Allstate Indemnity Company will go down -14.40% for renewed policies.

Rates change

Ben Gonzalez with TDI says these rate changes have nothing to do with the recent freezing weather.

“Rate changes happen all the time,” said Gonzalez. “Anything that you’re seeing right now coming in the months ahead, or in the short term, probably doesn’t have anything to do with this winter storm. Those were filed long ago.”

Compare coverage

When you’re looking to switch, shop around and make sure you’re comparing the same amount of coverage.

“The cheapest thing may not offer you the coverage that you need,” said Gonzalez.

Customer-specific rates

Insurance is very specific to your situation -- your house, your family and even your zip code can impact your rate.

The state makes it easy for you to compare with an interactive feature on its website.

Find and compare insurance policies in Texas

You can use the comparison tool to see what’s in the marketplace, then choose a few of those and shop those companies for the best rates.

Resolving a problem

Before you switch, you can reach out to TDI if you have a problem with a claim. It’s free. 1-800-252-3439.

“Ask us to correspond with that insurance company... or maybe it’s a formal complaint,” said Gonzalez. He added, “Maybe we’re just going to check and see if everything was handled according to your policy terms.”


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