Your Dog’s Breed May Boost Your Home Insurance
Before you buy or adopt a pooch, find out if the animal’s breed would affect your homeowners or renters insurance. You may be charged more for homeowners insurance or find it difficult to buy a policy, if your dog is considered to be aggressive or dangerous. Before you get a new pet, obtain home insurance quotes to ensure you get the best coverage for the lowest price.
Home insurance protects not only your house and your personal belongings, but it also covers people who may be hurt or injured on your property. That’s why insurance companies may ask you about your dog’s breed when you apply for homeowners or renters insurance. If your dog’s breed is considered more likely to bite or attack someone, you are riskier to insure. You could pay more for home insurance or even be denied. Make sure to get home insurance quotes, before you buy a policy.
Unfortunately, insurance companies don’t have a list of dog breeds that raise red flags when you apply for insurance. Insurers simply don’t target those breeds typically thought of as aggressive, such as pit bulls, Rottweilers, chow chows, Doberman pinschers and German shepherds. Insurance companies use different approaches to determine whether a breed is dangerous or aggressive. Some insurers take into consideration the number of bites associated with a particular breed.
In the U.S., dogs bite about 4.7 million people each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. An estimated 800,000 have injuries serious enough to require medical attention. And more than 50 percent of the bites occur on the dog owner’s property, making it a major issue for home insurers, according to the Insurance Information Institute. Dog bites account for one-third of all homeowner insurance liability claims, according to the insurance organization.
In about one-third of states, owners are “strictly liable” for their dogs’ behavior, according to the Insurance Information Institute. In the other states, dog owners are considered liable only if they knew or should have known their dogs had a propensity to bite. This is known as the “one free bite” principle. Find out about your state laws, before you get home insurance quotes.
Before you bring a new dog home, do research to avoid insurance problems. Talk to breeders, veterinarians and dog trainers to find out what kind of dog would be best for your family and home environment. If you’re interested in rescuing a dog, get information from a breed rescue organization or your local humane society. Be aware that some dogs aren’t good around small children, some don’t like cats and others don’t get along with other dogs.
Document your research for insurance purposes. Your insurance company may take your documentation into consideration when underwriting you. But even if they don’t, you’ll know you’ve done everything you could to choose the best dog for your family and your insurance company.
Remember when you buy a homeowners policy, you’re insuring the structure of your home, your personal belongings in your home and your guests. Once you have determined the best coverage for your family’s needs, you’re ready to obtain home insurance quotes. Call agents in your local area, contact several insurance companies directly or use InsuranceQuotes.com to instantly get competitive insurance quotes from the nation’s leading insurance providers. Take the time to protect you and your family today.