Knowing you’re protected by your homeowners insurance can give you great peace of mind, so it’s understandably worrying to find out your cover has been canceled. Fortunately, there are a few simple steps you can take to get everything back on track simply and easily.
Step 1 – Don’t Panic
Suddenly finding yourself uninsured isn’t great, but there’s no need to panic. Proceeding calmly will allow you to figure out exactly why you’re no longer covered and how best to remedy the issue.
Step 2 – Speak To Your Insurer
There are many reasons why your insurance may have been cancelled and speaking to your insurer directly is the easiest way to understand exactly what has happened in your case and what you will need to do to have it reinstated.
For example, if the cancellation is due to late or missed payments, your insurer will be able to advise you what you need to pay to catch up and have the policy reinstated, though in others it may not be as simple.
Step 3 – Written Communication
If you disagree with your insurer’s reasoning for canceling your policy or otherwise think they’re being unreasonable, the next step is to engage in written communication with them. This will hopefully help to clarify the issue and your point of view, as well as allow you to keep a record of your communication.
This can be done by post or email, but either way, you should remain professional and start by outlining the situation and why you believe there is an issue with how your insurer is handling it.
Step 4 – Consider Making A Formal Complaint
If you have exhausted your options when dealing with your insurer directly, you may wish to consider making a formal complaint with your state’s department of insurance or even taking legal action. You should make sure you’ve fully utilized your insurer’s complaints procedure before taking further action, however, and we would recommend taking the appropriate advice before engaging in any kind of litigation.
Step 5 – Find An Alternative Insurance Provider
Even if you’re unable to resolve the issues with your previous insurer, there’s no reason you should have to go without the safety and reassurance that homeowners insurance provides. Contact other insurers and find one who can offer you the coverage you need for a reasonable price.
Just be sure that you give your new insurers full and accurate information about your property and any other relevant matters, as failing to do so could result in you facing another cancellation.
Why Might My Homeowners Insurance Be Cancelled?
Although the only way to know for certain why your policy was canceled is to find out from your insurer, there are some common causes of cancellation which it’s helpful to be aware of.
Falling behind with your payments can lead to your provider canceling your insurance. However, of the many reasons for cancellation, this is often the easiest to resolve. Typically, your insurer will be willing to reinstate your cover as it was once you’ve paid the outstanding balance.
If you’ve not been completely honest with your insurer about your property, they may cancel your insurance as a result of this. This could include matters such as informing them that repairs or maintenance work was performed more recently than it actually was, or failing to disclose existing issues with the property. In this case, your insurer may be willing to reinstate your policy, but this isn’t guaranteed and will likely come with higher insurance payments.
Failing To Keep Your Home In Good Condition
If you fail to keep your home in a satisfactory condition, such as by neglecting to perform the necessary maintenance, this could also lead to your cover being canceled. In this case, your insurer may be willing to reinstate your policy if you address the issues.
If you believe your insurer is being unreasonable, then you should go through their complaints procedure and may escalate this to your state’s insurance department if the issue still isn’t resolved.
Changes In Risk Factors
Unfortunately, not every reason for cancellation is something you can control. Your insurance rates may increase or your policy be canceled if your insurer comes to view your area as being higher risk. There are many reasons this could be, including high claims in the area, but your best option in these circumstances may well be looking for a new insurer.