December 8, 2021

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World for Home.

The Best Home Insurance Companies of 2021



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© Provided by The Simple Dollar
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Your house is not merely a brick-and-mortar structure. Besides providing you with shelter and privacy, your home also gives you a sense of identity and belonging. It is your sanctuary, keeping you secure and centered. And the best way to protect your abode is by getting it insured.

 

Choosing a home insurance company is one of the most important decisions you’ll ever make as a homeowner. While the national average cost of home insurance is $1,211 according to the Insurance Information Institute, home insurance can save you thousands more by protecting your home and belongings. But the market is flooded with insurance companies and each of them has its own pros and cons. Insurance is personal and what works for one person may not work for another. Whether you are for the most comprehensive coverage, the cheapest policies or the best customer service, the choice will depend on your individual needs and budget.

The best 7 home insurance companies of 2021

Why trust us in finding the best home insurance?

Research methodology

To make our recommendations for the best homeowners insurance companies in 2021, we used our proprietary SimpleScore system to rate insurers on accessibility, coverage options, customer service, discounts, and support. The research was supported by inputs from experts from renowned third-party market research companies such as J.D. Power and Better Business Bureau and information from the national regulatory organization National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). Our recommendations and advice for homeowners insurance are developed after evaluating quotes, complaints and customer reviews from the past several years to establish the trustworthiness and reliability of the insurer.

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The good news? Our top-rated homeowners insurance companies offer some of the best home insurance rates in the industry. Each provider has something different to offer, so make sure to compare quotes from multiple companies to find the best homeowners insurance value.

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A quick look at the best-rated homeowners insurance companies

Are you shopping around for home insurance? Great! We’ve got you covered (pun intended). We narrowed down the top picks to help you choose the best homeowners insurance policy and provider. 

There are a few things to keep in mind when shopping for home insurance, like the average annual premium, the provider’s financial stability and what customers are saying about the company. 

If you’re trying to narrow it down, use the table below to help you decide which insurer is best for you.

Our top picks at a glance

Provider Simple Score J.D. Power AM Best Standard & poor
Amica Mutual 4/5 5/5 A+ n/a
Erie Insurance 3.5/5 5/5 A+ AA
State Farm 3.8/5 3/5 A++ AA
Allstate 4.6/5 4/5 A+ AA-
Farmers 3.2/5 3/5 A A
Liberty Mutual 4.4/5 3/5 A A
USAA 4.5/5 5/5 A++ AA+
  • Our SimpleScore uses a five-point scale to evaluate each provider’s discounts, coverage options, customer satisfaction, support and website accessibility. 
  • J.D. Power ratings were included for additional insight into each provider’s customer service.
  • Our top home insurance providers include Amica, Erie Insurance, State Farm, Allstate, Farmers, Liberty Mutual and USAA. All of our top choices offer great customer service, affordable rates and a wide range of coverage options.

Best homeowners insurance companies reviewed

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Best overall value – Amica

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Amica is the small-town star who made it big on Broadway with that down-to-earth charm. It’s a relatively small insurer, but an industry leader in customer service.

J.D. Power Rating 5/5 AM Best Rating A BBB Rating A+ SimpleScore 4 / 5.0 close SimpleScore Amica 4 Discounts 2 Coverage 5 Customer Satisfaction 5 Support 4 Accessibility 4

Amica is a relatively small insurance company, but its smaller size allows it to provide customers with personalized service and some of the best home insurance rates in the industry. When rated for its customer satisfaction, Amica receives a 5 out of 5 from J.D. Power.

Its competitive pricing is due to the insurer’s structure. Amica is a mutual insurance company, meaning it does not have stockholders to answer to. When you have a policy with Amica, you own a small piece of the company. As a result, you can get back up to 20% of your annual premium with a home insurance dividend policy. You can also save with discounts like installing an alarm system, bundling other insurance policies, opting into auto pay and remaining claim-free for three years.

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Best for affordability – Erie Insurance

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Erie Insurance has some home insurance rate lock features that may be ideal if you’re on a tight budget.

J.D. Power Rating 3/5 AM Best Rating A+ BBB Rating A+ SimpleScore 3 / 5.0 close SimpleScore Erie Insurance 3 Discounts 2 Coverage Options 4 Customer Satisfaction 3 Support 3 Accessibility 3

Erie Insurance offers a wide range of insurance types — home, auto, condo, rental, mobile home, motorcycle, boat and life. Not only will loyal customers benefit from multi-policy discounts, but also some of Erie’s customer services. For example, life insurance customers can utilize Erie’s retirement planning financial service.

Savings opportunities are pretty limited. Erie only has three discounts — multi-policy, advance quote and a discount for fire, burglar and sprinkler systems installed. You can lock in your homeowners insurance rate to avoid any surprise increase in price in the future. For those on a budget, knowing what to expect gives you peace of mind. Your policy comes with some free perks thrown in too, such as animal coverage and theft or loss.

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Best for in-app service – State Farm

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State Farm not only pays your bills but also plays matchmaker. With qualified claims, its Premier Service Program will set you up with a contractor for repairs during claims.

J.D. Power Rating 3/5 AM Best Rating A++ BBB Rating A SimpleScore 4 / 5.0 close SimpleScore State Farm 4 Discounts 2 Coverage Options 5 Customer Satisfaction 3 Support 5 Accessibility 5

State Farm goes above and beyond just reimbursing you for home insurance claims with its Premier Service Program. If your home needs any repairs, the program will connect you to one of its participating contractors for water mitigation, flooring, general contracting or roofing services. The resulting workmanship is guaranteed for five years.

If you live in a newer home, you can earn higher discounts for impact-resistant roofing and a home security system. State Farm lacks in coverage add-ons, however. Other companies offer interesting options like home office insurance, hurricane or eco-friendly material reimbursements, but State Farm sticks with pretty standard extended liability or umbrella insurance options. State Farm not only pays your bills but also plays matchmaker. With qualified claims, its Premier Service Program will set you up with a contractor for repairs during claims.

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Best for claim-free rewards and premium protection – Allstate

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Allstate is the valedictorian of insurance companies — it goes the extra mile to keep you informed and encourages your extracurriculars.

J.D. Power Rating 3/5 AM Best Rating A+ BBB Rating A+ SimpleScore 4.4 / 5.0 close SimpleScore Allstate 4.4 Discounts 4 Coverage Options 5 Customer Satisfaction 3 Support 5 Accessibility 5

Allstate has some of our favorite online tools and resources. Its website hosts thorough information on policies, claims and common questions about insurance. The Allstate Common & Costly Claims tool will provide detailed information on the most common claims and most expensive claims in your particular zip code. This could help inform the policy you design for your home based on common issues in your neighborhood.

Allstate’s long list of optional coverages include some unique add-ons, including electronic data recovery, green improvement reimbursement and home-sharing. If you’d like to replace damaged items or rebuild after an event with energy-efficient or eco-friendly options, the additional green improvement reimbursement coverage will make it possible. Then there’s the home-sharing option. If you rent your home on Airbnb or other home-sharing apps, your home and property will be covered against any losses. However, in 2020, Allstate dropped home insurance coverage for California residents in wildfire-prone areas.

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Best for simple policies – Farmers

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Like In-N-Out, Farmers has a small but mighty menu. You’ll find three options for your policy structure, with some room to customize (no tomatoes, please).

J.D. Power Rating 3/5 AM Best Rating A+ BBB Rating A+ SimpleScore 3.2 / 5.0 close SimpleScore Farmers 3.2 Discounts 2 Coverage Options 3 Customer Satisfaction 3 Support 4 Accessibility 4

For customers who get easily overwhelmed by options, Farmers keeps it simple. There are three basic homeowners insurance packages: Standard, Enhanced and Premier. Each package has a set of coverage amounts and add-ons. The Standard package is designed for new homeowners, its leaner and focused more on affordability. The Enhanced and Premier policies have higher policy limits and additional features, which may be worthwhile for higher-value homes.

Farmers Insurance is ideal for customers who prefer to work one-on-one with a local agent. It has solid customer service ratings and the local touch is likely to personalize that experience even more.

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Best for discounts – Liberty Mutual

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Fans of extreme couponing will enjoy that Liberty Mutual has discounts galore in its policies.

J.D. Power Rating 3/5 AM Best Rating A BBB Rating A+ SimpleScore 4.4 / 5.0 close SimpleScore Liberty Mutual 4.4 Discounts 5 Coverage Options 4 Customer Satisfaction 3 Support 5 Accessibility 5

Liberty Mutual is one of the few providers to provide homeowners with hurricane coverage, which customers in the Southeast will greatly appreciate. Its coverages are best for high net worth customers with valuables and assets that may need additional riders. Liberty Mutual also has inflation protection that will automatically adjust your coverage limits as the economy changes.

Liberty Mutual has the most opportunities for discounting your policy. You can receive a discount for going paperless, opting into autopay, holding multiple policies, insuring your home to 100% of the replacement cost, having a new roof, purchasing a new home or recently renovating a home, getting a quote before your current policy expires, installing safety systems and remaining claim-free for five years (time with your previous insurer counts).

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Best for military – USAA

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USAA is a military family favorite that helps protect the place that active duty or deployed military members call home — all at an affordable rate.

J.D. Power Rating 5/5 AM Best Rating A++ BBB Rating N/A SimpleScore 4.6 / 5.0 close SimpleScore USAA 4.6 Discounts 3 Coverage Options 5 Customer Satisfaction 5 Support 5 Accessibility 5

USAA is one of a very limited number of providers to offer identity theft coverage with its homeowner’s insurance. This provider also offers Home Sharing Coverage to help protect guests that may be renting your home or a room for a while. Furthermore, USAA covers military uniforms for those members on active duty or deployed. If your personal belongings need to be replaced, USAA will cover the replacement cost in today’s market instead of the depreciated value, which is another huge perk. If you’re looking for savings, you can bundle your homeowner’s insurance with a USAA auto policy for up to 10% savings. You’ll also save money if you install an ADT home security system for extra protection in case of a break-in. Plus, USAA members get 10% off if they’re claim-free for at least five years.

Other homeowners insurance providers

Even though these home insurance carriers were not selected as our top-rated homeowners insurance companies, you can find more information about these homeowners insurance providers in our reviews. 

Home insurance guide: How does it work?

Homeowners insurance provides you with coverage to replace or repair your home and its belongings if they are damaged from unordinary events (such as theft or fire). Homeowners insurance will also help cover costs if a visitor is hurt in your home.

But first, is home insurance mandatory?

Usually if you’re buying a house, you’re required to buy homeowners insurance before you can continue the sale. Remember, sometimes lenders will suggest insurers to you, but you don’t have to choose one of them.

However, if you don’t get home insurance on your own, your mortgage lender will assign you its choice of homeowners coverage, usually for a much higher cost.

What does home insurance cover?

Dwelling: The policy pays to rebuild or repair your home if it is damaged or destroyed by disasters listed in your policy, including fire, lightning or hail.

Personal property: Any items inside your home, including furniture, clothes, musical instruments and electronics are also covered for the disasters mentioned or if they’re stolen. If you have many expensive items, such as jewelry or art, you may need additional coverage to protect the cost of the valuables.

Liability: Liability coverage protects you financially against lawsuits if a visitor is injured in your home or if a family member causes damages to someone else. It includes your pets — if they bite someone who visits or they damage something inside someone else’s home, your liability insurance will step in.

Does a home insurance policy have a deductible?

Homeowners insurance comes with a deductible — an amount that you’ll need to pay out of pocket before your insurance pays for the rest. Typical homeowners deductibles can be $500 or $1,000. The higher the deductible, the lower your premium may be (and your monthly payment). When an incident in one of these categories (or one of the supplemental coverages you add on), you file a claim with your insurer and they’ll assess the pay out or reimbursement.

What is actual cash value vs. replacement cost?

The amount of coverage you get determines the magnitude of the risk the insurance company will absorb in the event something happens. Depending on your policy, you’re paid in one of two ways: actual cash value or replacement cost.

Actual cash value

This is when your insurance company factors in depreciation when determining how much money to give you after a covered peril has occurred. This often comes into play after roof damage.

Replacement cost

This is when your insurance company pays you the full amount to replace the destroyed or damaged property after a covered peril, regardless of its condition or age prior to the event.

What is not covered by homeowners insurance?

As much as insurance is meant to cover the things you can’t plan for, the inverse is also true: you need to plan for the things insurance doesn’t cover. There are certain situations unlikely to be covered by any insurance company — situations that can leave you on the hook for a lot of money if you aren’t prepared.

Here are some of the most common situations that homeowners insurance doesn’t cover:

  • Flooding
  • Earth movement caused by earthquakes, landslides and sinkholes
  • Wind damage
  • Simultaneous events, such as a storm that causes both wind and flood damage.
  • Maintenance neglect (burst pipes, mold, ordinance changes, termites, etc.)
  • Nuclear accidents
  • Acts of war

[ See: How to File a Home Insurance Claim ]

What is the average cost of home insurance?

According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, the average annual premium for home insurance is $1,211. Your homeowners insurance premium is affected by a number of factors including your location. Insurance companies calculate risk based on location and will adjust coverage for your home accordingly. Houses in areas with higher risk (like hurricanes, earthquakes or crime) will have higher insurance premiums, while homes in lower risk areas tend to have lower rates.

Check out the 10 cheapest states for homeowners insurance.

Cheapest States Top 10 Cheapest Average Annual Premiums Most Expensive States Top 10 Most Expensive Average Annual Premiums
Oregon $677 Louisiana $1,968
Utah $692 Florida $1,951
Idaho $730 Texas $1,893
Nevada $755 Oklahoma $1,885
Wisconsin $779 Kansas $1,584
Arizona $825 Rhode Island $1,551
Delaware $833 Mississippi $1,537
Washington $854 Colorado $1,495
Ohio $862 Massachusetts $1,488
Maine $882 Nebraska $1,481

What affects homeowners insurance premiums?

There are many factors that could affect your home insurance rate. Some of the most significant include:

  • Replacement cost
  • Deductible amount
  • Credit score
  • Location
  • Home condition and age
  • Your area’s vulnerability to weather events such as windstorms and hail
  • Claim history
  • Roof condition

The list above isn’t exhaustive, but it shows you how insurance companies take several factors into consideration when setting home insurance premiums. Higher deductibles can give you lower monthly premiums. Location can have a positive or negative impact. For example, if your home is close to a fire station you may get a lower premium. Also, different insurance companies will weigh these factors differently, which increases the importance of comparing rates from several companies. Chances are if you don’t get multiple quotes you’re going to end up paying too much. Consider some of the following ways to lower your home insurance premiums: choose a higher deductible, ask for discounts for safety devices, perform necessary home maintenance and home repairs, get a discount for bundling with other policies.

[ Next: Home Insurance Terms You Should Know About ]

The right type of home insurance for you

Which type of home insurance you get will depend on your needs, the type of home you have and how much you want to pay. Before deciding you will need to know these things about your house:

Decide what type of home insurance is best for you. You will need to know the following:

  • The specifics of your home.
  • Details like the age and square footage of your home
  • The replacement cost and information about siding and roof types.

Types of home insurance



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How to choose the best homeowners insurance for you

  1. Start the shopping process by gathering a list of potential home insurance companies and looking into their background. Since you’re already here you can read our guide and get many of these details from our research.
  2. Look particularly at current policyholder satisfaction scores, and find out how the claims response for each insurer works. You want to know if you’ll be dealing with licensed adjusters or a third-party call center. Claims should be paid in a fair and timely manner.
  3. Once you’ve narrowed the list to 3-4 insurance providers get quotes from all of them. Make sure to include any company you already have insurance through (auto, boat, etc.) since you should be able to get a bundling discount from them.
  4. Evaluate the probability of a natural disaster. How at-risk is your area for natural disasters like flooding, tornadoes and earthquakes? If your house could be damaged by falling trees or rising water, make sure you find a homeowners insurance carrier that covers these things in its basic coverage policies. While homeowners insurance may cover damage from thunderstorms, like hail damage, it may not cover flooding that seeps into your basement and damages your personal property.
  5. Lastly, ensure that the homeowners insurance company makes it easy to file claims. If it’s difficult to submit pictures, documents and evidence, it soon becomes a hassle to use your policy. Especially during a stressful time, you want to make sure that you can communicate and file claims with as little stress as possible.

How to save money on home insurance

1. Shop around

When comparing quotes from different insurance providers, it is crucial to not skimp. Your home insurance covers your property against unforeseen damages, and when shopping around for the best rates, take care to not compromise on coverage options. Your comparison of three or more providers should not be based on cost alone, but also on the protection you get for the price.

2. Ask your insurer about discounts

Not all available discounts are always listed on the insurance provider’s website. For instance, if you’re above the age of 55, retired or a former member of the armed forces, you may be eligible for certain home insurance price breaks. Discounts often vary from state to state; therefore, it is best to directly talk to a representative.

3. Bundle policies

Major providers usually offer discounts when you bundle your home and auto insurance policies. However, before you consider bundling options, make sure it is indeed cheaper than what you would pay for separate policies with any other insurer.

4. Raise the deductible

The higher the deductible, the lower the premiums. If you choose to pay more than the standard $500 or $1000 deductible, you can save money on monthly premiums.

5. Improve home security

Installing disaster-resistant features such as shatterproof glass and storm shutters, and reinforcing the roof of the house are some of the ways to secure your dwelling and make a better impression on insurance providers. Modern plumbing, heating, and electrical systems, as well as burglar and fire alarms also contribute to home insurance price cuts.

Best homeowners insurance in your state

What’s happening to the home insurance industry?

If you haven’t done it recently, it may be time to reevaluate your homeowner’s insurance policy to be sure you’re getting the best rates and coverage for your area. The New York Times recently reported that natural disasters are costing the U.S. economy an estimated $95 billion across the country. That could translate to higher insurance rates in the near future.

The rise of fires, storms and climate change could make a lasting impact on the cost of insurance for homeowners. Some families are considering living in less risky areas in order to avoid expensive coverage rates, but that could leave homeowners with fewer coverage options depending on where they move. These days, your rate all comes down to your coverage, any climate risks and your home structure.

Homeowners insurance FAQs

How much homeowners insurance do I need?

The amount of your homeowners insurance coverage depends on your home’s replacement cost and the value of the items inside your home. You may need to conduct an inventory of your belongings for the most accurate amount for your homeowners insurance.

Does homeowners insurance protect my appliances if they break?

Unfortunately, no. Appliances are covered under home warranty policies, which are applicable when an appliance’s warranty runs out then fails or needs repairs.

Will my premium go up if I make a claim?

Yes, your premiums will increase after you file a claim. Because of this, you may want to think twice before you file one. Weigh the cost of a potential increase in monthly payments, versus the cost for you to fix the issue yourself. This is especially important to consider if the claim won’t fulfill your deductible, which you’ll need to meet before insurance covers anything. Some insurers do offer a claim forgiveness feature which may be lenient on your first claim or will dismiss some after a few years of being claim-free.

Ask the Experts

  • Ellen Melchionni

    President

  • Stephanie Clemente

    Jurisdictional Officer

  • Paul Tetrault

    Executive Director

Ellen Melchionni

President, New York Insurance Association

Stephanie Clemente

Jurisdictional Officer, Amica Insurance

Paul Tetrault

Executive Director, The Insurance Library

1. What are some things homeowners can do to have maximum discount opportunities?

Homeowners need to first determine what is the right coverage for their needs. Once they decide what coverage is best for them, there are many ways they can save money. Listed below are things homeowners can do to maximize discounts.

  • Purchase umbrella or bundled policies
  • Develop, update or reevaluate home inventory lists
  • Install or increase security systems
  • Reduce or remove high liability property, if it is not being used (e.g. trampolines, pools and unsafe structures like dilapidated sheds)
  • Raise deductibles
  • We also encourage homeowners to shop around if they want to explore coverage options and related costs. Additional discounts could also be available, so a homeowner’s best bet is talking to their agent or company representative. Homeowners should take a look at the information provided at thankgoodnessforinsurance.org. Tips are available on how to create a home inventory, keep your home in top shape and select the right coverage options.

    2. How would you advise people to choose and/or adjust their deductible amounts?

    A higher deductible reduces your insurance cost, and a lower deductible raises the cost of your insurance. If you’re looking to pay less for insurance, you could consider raising your deductible but be advised that you will need to pay more if you have a claim. Not surprisingly, purchasing more financial protection has a related cost. Every homeowner should determine what options, including the amount of the deductible, make the most sense.

    Also, be sure to take a look at specific deductibles in your policy that may apply as a percentage of your home’s insured value. These deductibles are specific to a windstorm, named storm, and hurricane-related claims and are typically 1%-10% of the insured value of your home. These specific deductibles help decrease the cost of your insurance, but you should be aware of the deductible that may apply if you have a claim.

    1. What are some things homeowners can do to maximize discount opportunities?

    Often, bundling multiple policies like home, personal automobile and umbrella with the same insurer will qualify you for multiline discounts. There also may be discount opportunities for installing mitigation features or monitoring devices in your home. Examples include locally or centrally monitored alarms for fire and burglary, water and gas leak detection devices, and wind mitigation features. For customers with older homes, your carrier could offer discounts for major systems upgrades like roof replacement, plumbing or electrical systems. I recommend homeowners reach out to their carrier directly and ask which discounts might be available to them. They may find additional discounts for paying premiums in full or having them automatically drafted from their bank account and availability of an electronic discount for receiving documents via email.

    2. How would you advise people to choose and/or adjust their deductible amounts?

    Ultimately, you’re deciding how much risk you have the ability and interest in retaining yourself before insurance carriers respond to any covered loss. A higher deductible selection can be attractive to many, as it comes with a lower policy premium.

    There may be some restrictions on available deductible options placed on homeowners by mortgage lenders, and it’s important to confirm your selection is acceptable to your lender. Deductible options can also vary by state and carrier, so contacting your insurance provider and quoting different options to determine what makes the most sense is recommended.

    1. When does a homeowner need flood insurance and where can they get it?

    Just about every homeowner should consider flood insurance because most standard homeowners insurance policies do not cover flood. Flood insurance is typically required by lenders when a property is in an area that makes it a high risk for flood. Basic flood insurance can be purchased from the National Flood Insurance Program, and there is a lot of helpful information at floodsmart.gov. The coverage provided by the NFIP is limited; however, owners can purchase what is known as excess flood insurance as a separate policy to obtain more coverage as might be needed to protect one’s assets.

    2. Is it possible to own a home without homeowners insurance? If so, what are the pros and cons?

    It’s possible, but it is unusual and probably not advisable. Securing and maintaining homeowners insurance is typically a condition of obtaining a mortgage. If an owner does not have a mortgage, it is not required by anyone, but it is a critical coverage for most individuals to have. It covers both the structures and personal property owned by the policyholder and also provides liability protection that responds when an insured is sued. This coverage pays for the retention of a lawyer to defend the insured in the lawsuit. It can also indemnify an insured that is found liable, depending on the circumstances and policy terms.

    3. What should a homeowner consider when deciding whether or not to file a claim?

    Something to consider is whether the loss is large enough so that it makes sense to file a claim. Very small claims might not exceed the policy’s deductible, which is the amount the insured is responsible for before the insurance company has to pay, or exceed it by just a little. Depending on the circumstances, filing a relatively small claim or multiple ones could affect future rates, which should be taken into consideration.

    Too long, didn’t read?

    There’s a lot to consider when picking the right homeowner’s insurance. Weighing premiums, coverage options and deductibles can seem overwhelming, but it’s actually easy if you follow a few simple steps.

    Your coverage options will largely depend on how much liability coverage you need and the specifics of your home — including square footage and age. You’ll also need to determine what type of homeowners policy you’ll need because each is different depending on your home’s structure. Start by talking to an agent to get a free quote. They can help you pick the right policy for your home’s structure, help you narrow down coverage needs and help you find the best rates possible for your unique situation.

    The impact of COVID-19 on your home insurance.

    Many homeowners insurance carriers have suspended service cancellations, waived late fees or applied percentage discounts on insurance policies in response to the pandemic outbreak. However, many people are now working from home and may wonder if their homeowners insurance covers equipment needed to work. Things like monitors, computers and other office equipment may be covered under home insurance or at least your company’s business insurance policy.

    Coronavirus and Your Home Insurance: A Practical Guide7 Insurance Companies Giving Refunds During the COVID-19 Pandemic

     

    We welcome your feedback on this article and would love to hear about your experience with the home insurance providers we recommend. Contact us at [email protected] with comments or questions.

    Last editorial update – January 22, 2021, updated home insurance buying guide and insurance companies reviews.

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