Idaho owners could wish to reevaluate their home insurance as prices rise – KTVB.com
As the housing market continues to grow and property values soar, a Boise renovation company is working with more and more homeowners who are underinsured.
BOISE, Idaho – Idaho's booming population has presented homeowners with a problem they may not even know is too late. Those fortunate enough to have found a home in Treasure Valley might see dollar signs for the appreciation of their property, but could end up breaking the bank if they haven't updated their insurance policy.
Generally, when a disaster hits a home, people hope their insurance will help make up for the damage.
Master Restoration in Boise deals with homes and businesses that have been damaged by fire, flood, mold, and more. As the housing market continues to grow and property values rise, the restoration company begins to work with more homeowners who are underinsured.
"We've had two firefighter jobs in the past two weeks and both were underinsured so these people struggled a little," said Nick Crabtree, director of sales and marketing for Master Restoration. “We just have a girl and it's been 15 years since she adjusted her reporting. She's feeling pretty tough right now.
To be underinsured means that a homeowner has only covered part of their damage in the event of a claim. You're paying more out of your own pocket for the conversions than you originally thought. In some cases, homeowners pay tens of thousands of dollars.
Master Restoration said it was heartbreaking to work with homeowners telling them that their insurance limit is not commensurate with the current value of their home.
"We come into the game after that loss happens and it's too late to adjust again," said Crabtree.
Housing costs in Boise are 72% higher than they were four years ago. Add to this the recent 200% increase in the cost of wood across the country, and the cost of rebuilding a house is much more expensive.
"The demand for things is much higher than the supply now," said Bryan Graham, director of forest products for Associated Insurance Services.
Graham said homeowners who have been insured with the same company for five years have problems with inflation watchers built into policies. This cap could mean that many policies are no longer able to keep up with current costs.
He said homeowners believe when they buy insurance that covers everything related to the home, even through appreciation.
"It's really the cost of rebuilding the structure itself that needs to be focused on, even in this case I think many homes in the valley are probably still underinsured," said Graham.
He believes that many Boise homes are insured for around $ 100 to $ 150 per square foot when in reality many homes should be insured for $ 200 to $ 250 per square foot.
"If it has not been studied for several years at this point, I think you will see a significant gap in where it is currently insured and where it should be insured," said Graham.
Graham adds that the increase in coverage is less than most would expect. He reckons for a home insured for $ 250,000 but supposed to be at $ 500,000 the annual premium would increase by about $ 200. The price shouldn't double.
"I know no one ever wants to pay for insurance again, but the reassurance is very important and ensures that you have a policy that covers you in the event of a disaster," said Graham.
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