Accessing Your Attic: Find Out About What Your Home Insurance Policy Says About Utilizing This Space

How many stairs are you willing to climb to get the most benefit from every single inch of your living space? Converting your unfinished attic can affect your home insurance, and it mostly depends on what you plan to do with your space.

Here are just a few home insurance considerations to ponder before you begin your utilization of your attic space:

  • What is the space going to be used for? Is this space going to be a bedroom, a complete dormer, an entertainment area, a nursery? Your insurance responsibilities differ according to how space will be used.
  • Do you plan on renting the space to a family member or outsider? There are several additional consideration that you must review if you are going to rent the space. It will also have ramifications on your entire home insurance policy.
  • What utilities do you want to have in your attic space?  Will you need air-conditioning? Will you need heat? Is this space going to be used during all four seasons of the year?
  • What amenities do you want to place in your attic renovation? Will there be a bathroom? Will there be a kitchen area? Will there be entertainment space?

Market Value vs Replacement Cost

If I only paid $180,000 for my home, why does my insurance company want me to insure it for $225,000?

One of the biggest questions regarding home insurance centers around the amount of coverage to place on your home. Most homeowners assume the amount of coverage will be equal to the amount they paid for their house or the amount your town/county taxes places on your property.

It’s important to understand the difference between these two methods of valuation:

Market value. This is the price paid for your home. Real estate and property tax estimates are based on market value. It’s a method that values property based upon the amount a willing buyer would pay to a willing seller. In other words, the current value of your home based on market prices.

Replacement cost. The cost it will take to rebuild your house in the same spot, at the same size, and with the same quality of construction at today’s costs. Insurance companies use replacement cost, not market value. The specific configurations of your home (ex. square footage, brick or frame, garages, bathrooms, custom kitchens, etc..)  are used to determine the approximate replacement cost.

Here To Help Serve You

If you’re already a homeowner or anticipating a home closing, contact us today.

Instead of working for one big company, our family of Independent Agents represent multiple insurance providers. This allows us to compare rates and coverages so you’ll get the best coverage-to-value policy available. We’re here to serve you.

Let us help.