Make sure you have adequate home owners insurance on your Los Angeles property

My recent posts about the Station Fire and  home buyers not being able to get home insurance have reminded me of the importance of keeping yourself adequately protected should disaster strike.  I'm not talking about 50 gallon drums of drinking water and being ready for "the big" one. I'm referring to hazard insurance coverage on your home and other property you may own. When was the last time you check your homeowners' insurance policy?  Most likely you got your policy when you bought your home and never looked back.  Are you sure that you have adequate coverage?  Like any other insurance, if you wait until you have to make a claim, you could be in for a big shock to find that your coverage may not be what you actually thought it was. When you buy a home, your lender requires you to carry enough insurance to cover the cost of rebuilding your home.  But what about your possessions?  Have you made any additions to the property that would not be covered under your existing policy  Your home and belongings need to be protected against possible disaster and liability to third parties should they be injured on your property. Pull out your insurance policy and see what is actually covered.   Do you live in a flood zone? What about near an earthquake fault?  The type and amount of insurance required will depend on the particulars of your location. All homes are not created equal.  Are you living in a home with original hardwood floors and historic architectural details? Are you walls made of lathe and plaster or drywall?  These are important details. Make sure you talk to your insurance agent about the TRUE replacement cost of your home. Should the unthinkable happen, you don't want to find out that the TRUE replacement cost for your home is miles above what it would cost to build a basic house to the same size and configuration without the actual finishes currently in your home. If you have made any additions to the property, I hope they were done with the benefit of building permits. If not, get down to the city and have the work permitted after the fact. You now have more house to insure, but you don't want to risk your insurance company coming to you later refusing to cover damage due to unpermitted work. If you can't prove that the electrical upgrades were done with the benefit of city inspections, you could have a fight ahead of you should you have an electrical fire down the line. Make sure your insurance agent is aware of any additions or improvements you've made to the property and increase your coverage accordingly. make sure you have all additions permitted Have you lived in your current home a long time?  I bet you have a lot more personal property now than when you moved in.  Put together a list of your valuable possessions. Do you own antiques, jewelry, computers, and electronics now that you didn't own when you bought the house?  Even better than a list- make a video record of your belongs by walking through the house and describing the items as you tape them. Whether you make a video or a simple check list with estimated values, make sure you store it safely somewhere other than in your house! Keep a copy in a safe deposit box; give one to a friend or relative, or both! Writing this post got me to dig out my various policies for review. Dusty, one of our three cats, decided to give me a hand (paw?) and go through it all. my cat helped me go through the insurance paperwork We all know we need an annual physical and semi annual visit with our dentist. Make sure you have an annual insurance check up as well for your house, your car and even an umbrella policy if your financial situation dictates it.  We all hope we never have to make a claim against our insurance, but should the need arise you'll be happy you've kept your policy in tune with your actual needs. Dusty is satisfied with her work Dusty is pleased to be done getting everything organized! If you're in need of great insurance agent, it would be my pleasure to refer you. For information on buying and selling real estate in  Silver Lake, Echo Park, Los Feliz, and surrounding areas, contact me directly at 213-215-4758 or check out LApropertySolutions.com Jenny Durling signature Jenny Durling Broker Associate L.A. Property Solutions 213-215-4758 info@LApropertySolutions.com LApropertySolutions.com

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