With the levels of pollution on the rise, adopting practices that are known to be safe for the environment will have a double benefit: it will help keep the planet from deteriorating, but it will also have a prosperous effect on your bank account as it might help you save on insurance costs. The green factor is eligible for all insurance types: for auto vehicles, homes and businesses.
Sustainability is a star subject in recent years and insurers didn’t miss it. They are helping to promote sustainable building practices by offering eco-friendly policies to homeowners, car owners and businesses. These options include:
- Premium discounts for LEED-certified homes—the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Green Building Rating System.
- Eco-friendly replacement materials endorsements—offered on some standard homeowner’s policies, these allow the insured to replace and rebuild with more sustainable materials, practices and products.
- More coverage for alternative energy sources. Those generate their own geothermal, solar or wind energy and sell back to the grid the surplus power, now have an advantage: there are now policies that cover both the extra expense of temporarily buying energy from another source and the income lost during a power outage (the rule here is the outage to be cause by some covered peril). In addition, the costs correlated with getting back online (i.e. utility charges for inspection and reconnection) are also covered under these insurance policies.
For vehicle owners:
- Hybrid vehicle premium discounts
- Endorsements that allow hybrid replacement—specifically, after a total car loss, the insured can replace his or her conventional automobile with a comparable hybrid vehicle.
- Pay as You Drive (PAYD) programs—these require the installation of a device that tracks the miles driven in our car. The PAYD offers policy discounts to drivers who, as per their sensor, drove fewer miles than the average—in other words, that driver saved consumers money while reducing accidents, congestion and pollution.
- Allow green certification rebuilding in case of a total loss. This coverage may pay for the building itself, for engineering inspections of heating, ventilation, air-conditioning systems, building recertification fees, replacement of vegetative/plant covered roofs and debris recycling, as well as loss of income and costs incurred when the alternative energy generating equipment is damaged.
- Cover the installation of green building systems and materials to replace the standard ones in case of loss. The eco-friendly replacements include energy efficient electrical equipment, water conservation plumbing and nontoxic paints and carpeting.