Couldn’t be more excited about the gorgeous pool and luxurious hot tub in your dream home’s backyard? Well, just because it’s already there doesn’t mean you won’t be paying for that expensive feature. It will likely increase the premium of your homeowners insurance.

If you’re hoping to keep home insurance rates low, consider these things when shopping for a home—so you’re not surprised after you move in:

Tips for low home insurance rates: What you want already installed

Home security devices: From dead bolt locks to home security systems, added safety features may lead to a discounted premium.

Smoke detectors: Ensuring they’re in the home is the first step—verifying they’re working properly is the second.

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Sprinkler systems: It may be uncommon to find a house with a sophisticated sprinkler system—but if you do, you can look forward to savings.

Storm shutters: The more resistant your house is to high winds and/or natural disasters, the better.

Sump pump: This pump not only helps prevent flooding, but it also can help you save on your home insurance rates.

Tips for low home insurance rates: What you want up to date

Appliances: Updated appliances may seem like a nice-to-have, but they actually play an important part in having a safe electrical system throughout the home.

HVAC units: Need another reason to look for an updated HVAC unit? Here’s one: There’s hardly ever a good time for your heat or air conditioning to stop working.

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Electrical systems: Outdated electrical systems can spark fires, as the wiring might not be able to handle today’s typical electricity usage.

Plumbing: Updated plumbing reduces the risk of water damage—for example, replacing a water heater can cost thousands depending on the type. Yikes.

Roofs: It’s more than the potential for leaks, but also whether your roof can sustain high winds.

Tips for low home insurance rates: What will cost you extra

Pools and hot tubs: Not only are pools and hot tubs expensive to maintain, they’re also a liability—especially if the pool has a diving board or slide.

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Living on the coast or in a flood area: Living in any flood zone will impact your insurance. More than 20 percent of flood claims to insurance companies come from residents in moderate- to low-risk flood zones.

Distance from a fire department: The farther you live from emergency services, the higher the possibility is for extensive property damages.

Finished basements: They’re great for extra space, but not so great for the potential of flooding damages.

Wood-burning stoves: A fire in the living room can be cozy, but it’s still a fire—indoors.

On the Hunt for a New Home?

Get help understanding how your prospective home will impact your insurance.

Insurance underwritten by one of the following companies: Auto Club Insurance Association, MemberSelect Insurance Company, Auto Club Group Insurance Company, Auto Club Property-Casualty Insurance Company, Auto Club South Insurance Company, Auto Club Insurance Company of Florida, or non-affiliated insurance companies.

Products are offered by Auto Club Trust, FSB, Equal Credit Opportunity Lender.

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