How to buy home and auto insurance in Canada

Each year in Canada, approximately one out of every twenty homes places an insurance claim and over 160,000 car accidents. With numbers this high, it’s no wonder that so many people are seeking out comprehensive insurance plans that will help to keep them safe and insured in the case of an accidental or unpredicted event.

Why is insurance important?

Purchasing insurance, whether for your home or automobile, is extremely important. Insurance helps to protect some of your biggest investments in the event that something unforeseen happens in the future. Damage from fire, theft, accidents and storms are all real possibilities and without a comprehensive insurance policy, you would be left responsible to pick up the pieces and cover the expenses of repair or replacement yourself.

For a more detailed look at why insurance is important and what you need to know about purchasing a home or automobile insurance policy, visit our Auto Insurance & Home Insurance page.

What do I need to know about purchasing automobile insurance?

When purchasing automobile insurance there are a few different types of insurance plans to consider, including:

  • Third-Party Liability Coverage – This insurance will cover the cost of any loss that others may endure from an accident where you were the one at fault.
  • Comprehensive Coverage – This will provide coverage in the case that your car or anything inside it is stolen, the vehicle is vandalized, it is damaged due to weather or is set on fire.
  • Collision Coverage – Also known as “section C” coverage, this insurance will cover the cost of repairing your car in the event that you are in an accident with another car or your vehicle is damaged from a collision with an object.
  • Accident Benefits – This type of insurance will protect you in the event that you are injured in an accident by paying for medical treatment and lost income if you are unable to work. 

Other, additional insurance coverage, also known as endorsements, may also be available. These endorsements can help to:

  • Cover the cost of a rental car if your vehicle is undergoing repairs
  • Cover any damages that may occur if you are in an accident while renting a vehicle
  • Keep your premiums from increasing if you are in an accident for the first time
  • Cover the cost of any type of roadside assistance or towing fees
  • Ensures that, in the case of an accident, you are paid the full amount of the initial value of your car

What do I need to know about purchasing home insurance?

Some of the most common types of home insurance that you should be aware of, prior to purchasing, include:

Personal Property Coverage

This insurance will cover damage to your home and/or the contents inside due to fire, certain weather conditions or theft.

Liability Coverage

Liability coverage will protect you against any legal liability if someone injures themselves while on your property or if their personal property becomes damaged or stolen while they are visiting you.

How can I reduce my insurance premiums?

Insurance premiums can be costly but there are ways that you can reduce these premiums, which could result in saving you hundreds of dollars each year. Some of the most common ways to reduce your insurance premiums include:

  • Install smoke detectors in your home.
  • Install an alarm system in your vehicle and in your home.
  • Look into group discounts. Some organizations and companies may receive lower rates as do members of CAA.
  • Install winter tires on you vehicle.
  • Choose a higher deductible amount. Higher deductibles will mean you will have to pay more out of pocket if you make a claim but they will keep your monthly premium payments lower. 
  • Install carbon monoxide detectors.
  • Quit smoking. Smokers pay a higher home insurance rate.
  • Check what your insurance rates will be before buying a car. Different makes, models and years of vehicles will have different rates.
  • Bundle your insurance policies together.
  • Keep a good driving record. Good drivers with fewer claims, tickets or charges pay less in insurance. 

How can I purchase home and auto insurance?

Home and auto insurance can be purchased in person, online or through an insurance broker. No matter which method you choose, purchasing insurance is a relatively simple process. Ensure that you have the following information handy:

  • Make, model, year and VIN number of your vehicle
  • License number
  • Name, date of birth and address
  • Mortgage company information
  • Specific details on your home

Your broker or insurance specialist will be able to walk you through the process and will let you know of any specific information that you will be required to provide based on the policy that is right for you.

Choosing an insurance policy can be hard, especially as many providers may, on the surface, seem very similar. Here are some of the country’s most reputable insurance providers!

Frequently asked questions about how to buy home and auto insurance in Canada

Is home insurance mandatory in Canada

No. Home insurance is not mandatory in Canada if you own your home in full. Most financial institutions and mortgage companies however, do require a comprehensive home insurance policy in order for you to qualify for a loan.

Is automobile insurance mandatory in Canada?

Yes. There are different requirements regarding the type and amount of insurance coverage that is required depending on the province that you reside in but some level of auto insurance is required if you live in Canada.

What is an insurance broker?

An insurance broker is someone who works on your behalf to find you the right insurance coverage to meet all of your needs, with the right insurance company and will help to negotiate the best price possible.

Should I shop around for insurance?

If you have enlisted the help of an insurance broker, then you do not need to shop around for insurance. The broker will take on this task for you. If you plan on buying insurance yourself, then yes. It definitely pays to shop around, obtain quotes from different companies and compare the rates and coverage to find the policy that suits your individual needs the best.

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Amanda Leach

Fifteen years can be a long time to work in one industry, but not when you are doing something that you love. Amanda has enjoyed the freedom of working as a freelance writer for the majority of her career. She has successfully combined her passion and skill for writing while still enjoying a life filled with travel, learning and exciting new experiences. While she loves exploring all different types of writing, her PhD in Consumer Psychology has made her a sought after writer for marketing, business and technology fields. Amanda is a regular contributor to Smarter Loans.