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Insurance-based smart home technology saves homeowners in more ways than one

by Lindsey Wells

As remote work becomes the new norm for many homeowners, real estate professionals are encouraging clients to consider implementing insurance-based smart home technology into their homes. 

In partnership with Notion, Nationwide Mutual Insurance is meeting this growing demand and saving consumers money through its smart home program, according to a press release.

Insurance-based smart home technology devices such as doorbells, smoke detectors, thermostats and water leak detectors monitor and inform homeowners of hazards in their homes, even while they’re away.

A Nationwide survey found that a mere 7% of homeowners use smart sensors to monitor water leaks. Only 27% are aware of sensors that monitor water flow and leaks, and less than a quarter (24%) are aware of sensors that can shut off the water.

“The No. 1 cause of avoidable claims for Nationwide homeowners insurance policyholders is non-weather-related water loss, with most of those claims coming from pipe, fixture or water heater leaks,” said Beth Riczko, president of personal lines at Nationwide. “With the Insurance Information Institute reporting the average water damage and freezing event causes more than $11,000 in damage, homeowners should consider these types of sensors to provide an extra layer of protection.”

While costly price tags, lack of knowledge and security concerns keep some homeowners away from smart home technology, 64% said they would be interested in using the technology if it helped reduce their premiums. 

“Participating in Nationwide’s smart home program saves policyholders about 4% on their homeowners insurance premiums, but the savings are even greater when you consider the additional benefits of having a smart home device,” Riczko said in the release. “Alleviating the stress of having to get major damage fixed, reducing repair times, easing the anxiety you feel every time you leave the house — that kind of peace of mind is priceless.”

The Nationwide smart home program checks for open doors and windows, smoke/CO2 alarms and water leaks — all from a personal device. 

The program is available in Alabama, Arizona, California, Connecticut, Washington, D.C., Iowa, Illinois, Mississippi, Ohio, Texas, Virginia, Vermont and Washington. Additional states will be added in 2022, the release said.

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