Leadership

Adapting To Evolving Challenge On The Home Insurance Front

Home Builders: Pioneer the future of homes and homebuying with these four market-tested strategies.

Together with

Leadership

Adapting To Evolving Challenge On The Home Insurance Front

Home Builders: Pioneer the future of homes and homebuying with these four market-tested strategies.

Together with
May 7th, 2024
Adapting To Evolving Challenge On The Home Insurance Front
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As we continue to navigate these uncertain times of extreme weather, higher insurance premiums, and limited insurance availability in certain areas, many builders know it’s important to implement strategies that put homebuyers at ease. Here are four opportunities from an insurance perspective that allow builders to stand out from the competition and set the stage for a positive homebuying journey.

Building resilient homes

Resilience measures a home’s ability to withstand extreme weather conditions and minimize any impact from potential hazards. Considerations at the forefront of new construction planning after careful evaluation of the local climate will help determine which materials may be most beneficial. If a location has frequent wildfires, consider incorporating fire-resistive materials and create structures that can be modified down the road to meet changing conditions. Also being mindful of the layout of the home and any nearby existing vegetation may assist with placement.

For areas prone to strong wind and rain, consider materials like steel and concrete, and use reinforced glass with impact resistance. A one-story home is also more likely to withstand hurricane conditions than homes that are taller. Taking proactive measures to make new homes more durable against the elements demonstrates expertise and thoughtfulness that homebuyers will appreciate and can benefit from over the life of their insurance policy. All of these factors help with long-term insurance affordability.

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Installing smart home features

As catastrophic events become more prevalent, smart home devices provide a source of security for customers who want more protection for their home and belongings. Consider incorporating these smart features to give buyers peace of mind and possibly extra savings on their policy:

  • Water damage is the most common cause of loss on a home. Installing water sensors and automatic shut-off valves can help mitigate this risk.
  • Smart smoke detectors take safety up a notch with capabilities like sending an alert to a smartphone. They can also connect with other smart home devices like a smart thermostat to cut off airflow and a smart door lock to instantly unlock.  

These features can make a significant difference for homebuyers in the event of an emergency.

Finding the right location

With major insurance companies pulling out of certain states due to extreme weather conditions, it’s never been more important to consider the environmental factors that affect the stability of homes. This includes the potential for natural disasters such as hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, and floods since that may impact insurance availability and cost. With fewer insurance carrier options in many states, it’s been a challenge for homeowners in elevated risk areas to obtain coverage. And some who have insurance are paying a high price for it – with premiums several times higher than those paid in other regions of the country.

At Westwood Insurance Agency, we insure new homes in more than 99% of all communities nationwide, so homebuyers can secure coverage almost anywhere they build. Licensed in all 50 states, we help builders close more than 100,000 new construction homes each year. Plus, our partnership with more than 40 different insurance carriers allows customized policy options for maximum savings. There’s no need for buyers to shop around for additional quotes, and most who do still come back to us.

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Embedding insurance into the homebuying process

Embedded insurance incorporates home insurance as part of the homebuying journey. It provides the insurance cost upfront so buyers are aware of their total monthly home payment cost from the beginning.

Westwood Insurance Agency partners with the country’s top builders to embed home insurance early in the buying process. Once buyers sign a contract to buy a new home, Westwood sends a personalized quote to them within 24 hours. If buyers accept the quote, Westwood works directly with the buyers’ lender to provide the evidence of insurance needed for closing.

In today’s climate of heightened risk and volatility, the transparency and certainty of embedded insurance is invaluable. No matter where homes are located, a partnership with Westwood helps builders and buyers check insurance off the list early on to help them close on time. Founded by a builder more than 70 years ago, Westwood specializes in new home construction and uses an embedded insurance model to make the insurance process fast and easy.

Buying a new home is an experience that’s already overwhelming to many homebuyers, and market conditions have created challenges that add in another layer of complexity. Building resilient homes, installing smart home features, finding the right location, and embedding insurance into the buying process offer valued benefits to homebuyers seeking a source of confidence in what is likely their largest investment. Builders who use these personalized and innovative techniques to benefit homebuyers will enhance the customer experience and set themselves apart as a trusted partner in the homebuying process.

For more information on the benefits of an embedded insurance model during this hard market, read this special report: Stability in Uncertainty: Helping Builders Close on Time with Embedded Home Insurance Solutions.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Alan Umaly

Alan Umaly

President, Westwood Insurance Agency

During Umaly’s 30-year tenure, he has led Westwood Insurance Agency’s business and organizational growth.

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President, Westwood Insurance Agency

During Umaly’s 30-year tenure, he has led Westwood Insurance Agency’s business and organizational growth.

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