Why You Need Homeowners Insurance with Kirstin Northcraft

Why You Need Homeowners Insurance with Kirstin Northcraft

  • Real Creative Group
  • 10/7/22
 

Hey everyone, I'm James Bowerman with the Real Creative Group.

Today I'm here with Kirstin Northcraft with Goose Head Insurance, and we're going to be talking about homeowner's insurance, why you need it, what it covers, and all sorts of other fun insurance things.

James Bowerman:
So Kirstin, for the people watching who don't know who you are, tell us a little bit about what do you do, and Goose Head, and fun stuff with insurance.

Kirstin Northcraft:
I know insurance is such a fun topic, but it's important. My name's Kirstin Northcraft with Goose Head Insurance. We're a broker. What that means is I can quote with about 30 companies, save you that time and legwork, and then give you a consultative look at what the market looks like and what I recommend.

James Bowerman:
Excellent. Yeah, I love working with brokers because you're able to shop and really get the customer the best rate and the best package, I would say, that that fits their needs.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Absolutely.

James Bowerman:
Tell me a little about some of the companies that you do work with. You said 30 of them?

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah, so we work with Nationwide, Liberty Mutual, Progressive, Travelers, AAA, Allstate, and a bunch of well-known companies. Yeah, all the ones that you've heard about all the time.

James Bowerman:
Awesome. It's more of a one-stop shop. Don't have to go to each individual one, you can take care of it for them in one swoop. All right Kirstin, so when it comes to homeowner insurance, let's talk about why we need it. Obviously, in real estate, I help home buyers all the time, and it's one of the things we check off, did you get your homeowner's insurance? Why do we need it?

Kirstin Northcraft:
We need it because the bank is going to require it at closing, like you mentioned. Then, your home is a big asset. It's probably the biggest asset that we own as a homeowner, so you want to make sure that your homeowner's insurance is in place to protect you from the unforeseeable.

James Bowerman:
Okay. Well, let's transition then into the unforeseeable and talk about, what are some of the things that the homeowner's insurance is going to cover.

Kirstin Northcraft:
There are some coverages that are automatically included in your policy. Wind and hail are going to be huge claims that you might put in. A windstorm comes through, knocks off some shingles, you get some damage because of that. That's definitely covered. Things like fire. I had an insured that had a barbecue on his back deck, and an ember hit the deck and ended up engulfing in flames, caused a big fire at his house, and it was probably the biggest claim I've ever had to date. They paid all the way to the policy limits, and that's definitely an occurrence that would be unforeseeable and that will be important to have homeowner's insurance to make sure you get what you had back.

James Bowerman:
Sure, yeah. Certainly unexpected. Did they end up replacing or rebuilding their home, or how did that end up working out?

Kirstin Northcraft:
They ended up rebuilding their home, and actually while they were displaced because they can't live in the house-

James Bowerman:
Sure.

Kirstin Northcraft:
They were able to use their insurance to stay somewhere else temporarily.

James Bowerman:
Okay.

Kirstin Northcraft:
That's covered while it was getting repaired. That was pretty cool.

James Bowerman:
That's fun, yeah.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah.

James Bowerman:
Anything else that typical claims coverage for things that happen to a house?

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah, typical, theft and vandalism, they happen, again, unforeseeable. That's covered up to the policy limits. Water is a big thing.

James Bowerman:
Definitely.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Water flows through our entire house, and I don't think people really realize that, other than electricity, water is the biggest commodity in our house. It can wreak havoc if it were to overflow, if the sump pump were to fail.

James Bowerman:
Yes.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Those are just coverages that I recommend on the homeowner's insurance, for sure.

James Bowerman:
Yeah. I've had a lot of issues with water in homes, especially in this area around the bay with the water table, heavy rains, definitely something you want to make sure that's protected and covered.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yep.

James Bowerman:
Anything else that-

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah, so falling objects.

James Bowerman:
Okay.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Tree, if a tree falls on your house and you get damage from that, totally covered. Again, unforeseeable.

James Bowerman:
Yep.

Kirstin Northcraft:
I can imagine if you have a pretty big tree, that could do some damage.

James Bowerman:
Absolutely. It reminds me of, I was selling my parents’ house a couple of years ago, and we were seven days away from the settlement, and a huge tree, probably this big around, fell on top of the house, drug all the way down the roof, made a big hole, ripped off the whole front porch and a lot of the siding coming with it. It was crazy getting that call, that, oh, a tree landed on the house. I'm like, what do you mean? We had to call the insurance company, and they sent out an emergency response team, and they had to get this tree off the house, still got a video of that. We're able to patch it up with tarps. Ultimately, they put a new roof on, put new siding on, and rebuilt the porch. We closed a few weeks later, and basically, the buyer got some free upgrades. It did work out, thankfully, because we had the homeowner's insurance.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah, thankfully nobody was hurt in that instance. If they were hurt, that would be covered as well up to the policy limits. If it was raining and that happened, the water damage that came into the house and damaged, as long as it started with that tree, that fallen object-

James Bowerman:
Yep.

Kirstin Northcraft:
It's covered up to the limits on your policy.

James Bowerman:
I just remember they did cover for them to be in temporary housing, too.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Because they can't live there while that's-

James Bowerman:
They can't live there, no, absolutely not. They had to inspect it and make sure it was still structurally sound, and all this stuff. Definitely one of those moments when you're glad you have the insurance.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah.

James Bowerman:
All right, so moving on from what it covers, maybe let's talk about what it does not cover. Maybe things you want to add on to your policy, or just assumptions that you think you're covered for this, but you're not.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah, there are a couple of things that I recommend and, I always offer to my clients. One of them is jewelry.

James Bowerman:
Okay.

Kirstin Northcraft:
I recommend adding on a rider on your policy for jewelry, anything that's valuable, any antiques. Basically, anything appraisable onto your policy for sure.

James Bowerman:
That's to protect if somebody breaks into your home and steals your jewelry, you're covered for that.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah, or if you have a fire or it's damaged in that way, on the perils.

James Bowerman:
Okay.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Water backup, like I mentioned, is not automatically covered on your policy. You have to endorse that on.

James Bowerman:
Okay.

Kirstin Northcraft:
I always offer it. I don't think I've written a policy without it, so definitely recommend that. That's for anything from sinks, tubs, sump that overflow.

James Bowerman:
Okay.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Different than something that's not covered is flood.

James Bowerman:
Okay.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Flood insurance is not covered.

James Bowerman:
Flood, rain coming in from the outside, but definitely a lot of sump pumps in this area. I've got a couple of them. Most of the houses around here, they have the sump pumps. Even going back to my parents' house, when the power goes out, if you don't have the battery back up, and is that the same thing is, it's the sump pump. Even though water might be raining, but that's covered under the sump pump. Right?

Kirstin Northcraft:
If the sum pump fails and water comes in, that's covered under the water backup coverage. But, if the sump pump just can't keep up with the water, that's flood.

James Bowerman:
Okay.

Kirstin Northcraft:
It's kind of a gray area there. Just talk to your insurance agent and make sure that you have a clear understanding.

James Bowerman:
Gotcha.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah.

James Bowerman:
But, if you don't have the additional, is it a rider? Is that what we call it?

Kirstin Northcraft:
Mm-hmm.

James Bowerman:
Because, we don't have the sump pump rider, you won't have anything. Right?

Kirstin Northcraft:
Absolutely.

James Bowerman:
It's not included by default.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Exactly.

James Bowerman:
Okay.

Kirstin Northcraft:
It's not, and I 100% recommend it. If you don't have it on your policy, I would talk to your agent.

James Bowerman:
For sure.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah. Something else that I would also add and that's becoming more of an instance, is underground utility line coverage.

James Bowerman:
Okay.

Kirstin Northcraft:
It's for the lines in the ground from your house to the street.

James Bowerman:
Okay.

Kirstin Northcraft:
That could be the gas line, the water line, the sewage line if you have city. Those things are normally not covered, because they're not part of the structure, they're actually in the ground. Again, it becomes a little bit of a gray area on when the city steps in and what's your responsibility.

James Bowerman:
Yeah, I've run into several issues with that on inspections, and it's really from the connection outside to the house that's the issue, and replacing that pipe. Then, a lot of questions pop up as who's responsible.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah. I mean, it could be that the pipe fails. It could be that there's tree invasion, the root invasion of the tree. Things like that, if you have the endorsement on your policy, it would be covered. It's just becoming more and more of an occurrence. Yeah.

James Bowerman:
All right, Kirstin, well thank you so much. I really appreciate all the info. I hope you guys appreciate all this information as well. But, if you have more questions or you're shopping for homeowner's insurance, or you do auto and, what else do you do?

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah, we do auto insurance, umbrella, life.

James Bowerman:
You can package and get all the savings--[crosstalk 00:08:46]?

Kirstin Northcraft:
Rental properties, we can do it all, pretty much.

James Bowerman:
Perfect. If they want to get ahold of you, how should they contact you?

Kirstin Northcraft:
Yeah, you can call or text me at (410) 793-7615. That's my direct line. If you want to get a quote, you can just go to http://www.thatinsurancemama.com.

James Bowerman:
Thatinsurancemama.com. All right, we'll put that on the screen. Thank you again, Kirstin. Really appreciate it. Thanks for watching, everyone.

Kirstin Northcraft:
Thanks for having me.

James Bowerman:
If you have any questions, you can also leave a comment below. Until next time, see you again soon.

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