Why can’t we get insurance?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jul 17, 2012

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Insurance Question from Portland, TN

Asked on 07/17/2012

Why can’t we get insurance? My wife and I have excellent credit, good income, very little debt, and want to buy a new construction home in a nice subdivision that is about 1 mile from a fire station. Here is the problem. we had a total fire loss to our home 2 years ago where the cause was undetermined. We had something very unfortunate happen, but aside from that our situation is the very definition of "low risk". Can we now never buy a new home because we can't get insurance?

Answer given on August 13, 2012

Insurance companies are being very rigid in the loss history of homeowners. If you have had a loss within the past three years many insurance companies will not offer you a new homeowner policy.The company that insured you at the time of the loss may be willing to write a new policy on your behalf. Contact your old agent or insurance company and see if they will offer you a policy. They may want a high deductible and there may be a surcharge for having a loss within the past three years, but that should be removed after three years.If your previous insurance company will not cooperate then contact another agent, preferably an independent agent, since they represent multiple insurance companies and they should be able to help you find insurance. Again, you may have to accept a higher deductible and/or a surcharge for the loss, but it will be an insurance policy for your new home.

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