Challenges with Insuring Older HomesSearching for the home of your dreams can take time, time to find the right “feel of home”.  Different homes for different folks are why there are many options when looking for the right home, so whether you prefer new construction or old world charm there is something for everyone. If the older home is your preference, you need to be aware of some common challenges that are associated with insuring older homes.

Older Homes May Mean Higher Risks

“Older” homes are ones that are at least 25 years old so if you are in the market to buy or sell one, you should be aware of some typical areas of concern according to Alabama insurance companies. Insurance companies have a right to be concerned due to the higher risk potential that can be inherent in older homes. Because of this, many insurers have enforced strict underwriting regulations and while the cost to insure older homes may not be higher, you may have to do your homework before buying or selling one. Below are some common issues you may face:

Roof- Any older home that hasn’t had the roof replaced may come with issues. Some common concerns include damaged shingles, rotting wood, evidence of hail damage or any leaks. Getting a licensed, specialized roofer to inspect the roof is recommended and of course, getting an estimate to repair or replace the findings is crucial.

Electrical- Many older homes still have fuse boxes, which are a massive fire hazard and should be replaced with circuit breakers before trying to get an insurance company to write an Alabama homeowners insurance policy. Also, hire a certified electrician to inspect the wiring to ensure it is up to code. Faulty wiring or knob-and-tube wiring may be the one reason that an insurer will refuse to insure the older home of your dreams.

Plumbing- One of the most common types of problems with older homes lies with the plumbing. Many older homes have old galvanized steel pipes that can rust and weaken. Old rusty, leaky pipes spell disaster to an insurance company. Make sure a thorough inspection is done to verify the type of pipes the home has and make the necessary changes to correct.

Appliances- Older fireplaces, dryers, and stoves can be a fire hazard in older homes, which in turn creates a red flag to the insurance company if you are looking for Alabama homeowners coverage.

Heating- The older home in question may have an old oil furnace, which can eventually rust and deteriorate, leaving holes and consequently black soot throughout your home. Hire a skilled professional to inspect the furnace for holes and damages that need to be addressed.

If old world charm is your preference, do your homework and you will find getting the right type of Alabama homeowners insurance for your charming home won’t be that difficult. If you are in the market to sell or buy an older home, contact us at Burkett & Associates Insurance Agency with any questions you may have. Call TODAY at 256-704-7400 for all of your Alabama homeowners insurance needs.