Cost-Saving Perks to Upgrading to a Smart Home

More insurance companies are offering discounts on home insurance policies for owners with Internet-connected devices. Companies are seeing the perks of smart home tech in helping to prevent leaks or burglaries.

Insurance companies nationwide are offering incentives to install one of numerous connected devices. The devices may include everything from moisture sensors, smart thermostats to video doorbells or home security monitoring systems.

State Farm is offering a discount for installing a Canary home security monitor system. American Family offers a discount for customers who install the Ring video doorbell, which they believe serves as a deterrent to burglary.

Liberty Mutual is offering to send a Nest Protect smoke detector (retailing for $99) free of charge and also cut premiums on the cost of fire coverage for its subscribers.

Smart home devices in a home help create something like a “check-engine light for the home,” says Jon-Michael Kowall, assistant vice president of innovation at USAA. For example, the connected devices may help insurers warn home owners, based off data from their installed moisture sensors, that a pipe may fail soon.

“In the near future, you’ll give us a mailing address and we will send a box of technology to you,” says Kowall. “What’s in the box will prevent claims and also offer a better service to policy holders.”

Source: “Why Insurance Companies Want to Subsidize Your Smart Home,” MIT Technology Review (Oct. 12, 2016)

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