Tri-Valley Home Owners-Working on the house? Talk to your insurance agent first

Warren Oberholser
Warren Oberholser
Published on October 5, 2020

Hi, I’m Warren Oberholser. I’m a realtor in the East Bay Tri-Valley area in Northern California. My goal is to help both buyers and sellers get maximum results for one of their biggest investments, their home.

The folks at Pew Research released the results of a recent poll that shows “Half of the adults who say they lost a job due to the coronavirus outbreak are still unemployed.”

How they are faring financially depends a great deal on how prepared they were to lose their paychecks.

Apparently, some are doing ok, according to another survey that finds slightly more than half of unemployed Americans are performing some sort of home improvement project. Many are going the DIY route, but handymen and women and painting and flooring contractors are quite busy as well.

If you’ve performed home improvements, or are considering doing so, you may want to speak with your homeowner’s insurance agent to learn if and how these projects will affect your policy.

Certain renovations will increase the home’s value significantly and, thus, the cost to rebuild it as well. Let’s take a look as some of these projects.

Swimming pool installation

Judging by the enormous spike in U.S. sales and installations of inground pools, you aren’t alone in your desire to add one to your backyard.

Although they’re pretty to look at, fun to swim in, and one of the best ways to cool off on a hot summer day, they’ve also considered a liability risk to insurers. Yes, it probably will raise your premium.

You can mitigate some of the risks by constructing a fence, with a locked gate, around the entire pool.

Speak with your insurance agent before the excavator arrives to get the skinny on what else you can do to keep the cost of your homeowners insurance from skyrocketing.

Need a new roof?

Adding a new roof to the home isn’t one of the more exciting home renovations, but when it has seen better days, adding a new one is a necessity.

The impact on your insurance premium depends on several factors, including the material you choose. Definitely run this plan by your insurance agent because you could qualify for a discount on your premium, depending on the roofing material you choose.

On the other hand, a new roof may increase your property value and you will need additional coverage.

Basement renovation

A finished basement is many a homeowner’s dreams. It also adds to the usable square footage of the home thereby increasing the home’s market value and the cost of your insurance premium.

There is also the issue of flooding and most policies don’t cover flood damage.

“There are several reasons why a basement may experience water damage,” according to Guy Kopperud at InsuranceJournal.com.

He goes on to suggest that some of these instances are covered by homeowners insurance and others will require you to buy a certain type of flood coverage.

“Your standard policy flood damage coverage is most often based on whether the event was sudden and accidental, like an overflowing tub or product failure such a malfunctioning washing machine,” Kopperud says.

“Storms and other rising waters are generally not covered under a standard homeowners’ policy and require additional flood insurance.”

He goes on to recommend using one or more sump pumps and keeping them maintained to avoid flooding.

Most important of all is to pick up the phone and call your insurance agent while your home improvement project is still in the planning stages. Ask about discounts and how to get them and how to mitigate anything that will raise your premium.

I hope you enjoyed this article. Please let me know if you have any questions. Warren

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Hello…I work with both buyers and sellers in the Tri-Valley area of Northern California. The Tri-Valley is comprised of 6 cities: Pleasanton, Livermore, Dublin, San Ramon, Danville, and Alamo. To better understand what each city has to offer, I have created a Pros and Cons video and BLOG for each – (Pros & Cons for Pleasanton, Pros & Cons for Livermore, Pros & Cons for Dublin, Pros & Cons for San Ramon, Pros & Cons for Danville and Pros & Cons for Alamo). If you are thinking about purchasing or selling a home, please reach out to me by text, phone, or email. If it is convenient, I can schedule a Zoom chat so we can discuss your home goals. Wishing you all the best on your home journey. Cheers!

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Warren Oberholser

eXp Realty

[email protected]

(925) 980-4603

DRE # 01861944

ALL MATERIAL PRESENTED HEREIN IS INTENDED FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY. THE INFORMATION CONTAINED HEREIN HAS BEEN OBTAINED THROUGH SOURCES DEEMED RELIABLE BUT CANNOT BE GUARANTEED AS TO ITS ACCURACY. SUBJECT MATERIAL MAY HAVE ERRORS, OMISSIONS, CHANGES OR WITHDRAWAL WITHOUT NOTICE. ANY INFORMATION OF SPECIAL INTEREST SHOULD BE OBTAINED THROUGH INDEPENDENT VERIFICATION.

Warren Oberholser
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