Home Insurance

Fresno, CA Tobie Stanger, Consumer Reports said: "The problems included delayed payments, payouts that were smaller than expected, and some claims that were denied entirely."

Those who reported the most problems with claims were with Farmer's Insurance, Allstate, and Traveler's, all major insurance carriers. And Consumer Reports finds many insurance companies are cutting back coverage.

Tobie Stanger, Consumer Reports said: "Some are imposing high deductibles for windstorm damage. You might not be covered any longer for mold or dog bites. So you better check your policy to see what's covered."

Key is checking what coverage you'll have if your house is destroyed.

Tobie Stanger, consumer reports said: "Insurers are cutting back here, too. 'Guaranteed replacement cost coverage,' which pays the total bill to rebuild regardless of the price is very hard to get, and where it's available it's very expensive."

Consumer Reports recommends comparison shopping for insurance every five years. Some good sites, netquote.com and insweb.com, and check that the policy includes adjustments for inflation.

Consumer Reports said be aware that flood damage is never covered by private homeowners insurance, but you can get flood coverage through the Federal Government.

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