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Why are Building Materials Considered for Renters Insurance Quotes?

Purchasing an Apartment Insurance Policy

One of the most common questions people have when applying for apartment insurance is why they have to answer questions about their apartment’s building materials. Insurance providers want to know about how these complexes were built because they could potentially play a role in determining your premiums. Every insurer has done its homework when it comes to building materials and they know the strengths and weaknesses of each one of them. Depending on the types of risks associated with your area, certain types may be more vulnerable than others.

For instance, complexes located near the coast of Florida are at high risk for hurricanes. In this situation, the apartment with stronger materials, such as brick, would better stand up to a hurricane than those made of weaker materials, like wood. In order to cover the extra risk associated with providing coverage to an apartment that was built weaker, insurers will charge higher premiums. Unfortunately, there’s little you can do to change the effect that your apartment’s building materials may have on your premium.

However, there are several other important factors that also help determine your rate that you do have some control over, such as the size of your policy and your credit score. By adjusting some of the other premium factors, you can mitigate any negative effect on your premium.

Types of Materials

Generally, there are only a couple different types of materials used for constructing apartment buildings. Some obviously provide better protection than others, and your insurance premiums may reflect that. Here’s a look at some of the most common types of building materials in apartments and how they could affect your costs:

  • Brick Stone: These are apartments made solely out of solid brick. Brick structures offer some of the best protection available and may provide the opportunity for a discount on insurance rates. However, most brick homes or apartments are fairly old by now, as very few are still constructed today.

  • Brick/Masonry Veneer: This refers to apartments that are actually constructed using wood or some other type of material, but have a single layer of brick or stone on the outside. Unlike legitimate brick buildings, these won’t help you save much on renters insurance premiums.

  • Frame with Aluminum Siding: These types of homes usually have a wood or metal frame, along with aluminum siding, often coated with weather resistant paint. It’s not the strongest building material and could end up costing you extra in high risk areas.

  • Reinforced Concrete: An apartment made using reinforced concrete is fairly stable, especially because the exterior is usually finished with stucco or brick. It shouldn’t affect your insurance rates too much in either direction.

  • Steel: When an apartment is said to have a steel structure, it’s generally referring to the structural system of the building. These hold up slightly better to the elements than homes with a wood structural system, which are far more common.