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Home Insurance: Do Home Insurance Costs Vary Between States?

By Christina Kelley

Buying homeowners' insurance is an important part of owning your own home. It is the financial security blanket that protects your most valuable asset - your home. Many mortgage brokers, cities, counties and states require that any homeowner carry at least a liability policy, protecting you from lawsuits if someone is injured on your property. As with any insurance product, there are several factors that can change the price of the policy.

Home Size

The size of your home matters when looking at a home insurance policy. The number of square feet, the additions to the property such as pools or barbecue pits, and the size of the property all matter in policy calculations. The larger a home, the more a policy will cost, simply because there is more area to cover. Added features carry their own increased risks, such as fires or drownings, raising the price of a policy. A large estate will cost more to protect than a small yard, again, because more area is available for someone to get hurt.

The size of a home matters to insurance companies. With home prices being higher for a larger home, the policy to cover the replacement costs of the house increase. A home insurance policy increases as the size of the home increases, for the simple fact that it costs more to repair or replace damaged homes that are larger in size.

Deductibles

A deductible is how much you must pay before insurance covers the remaining amount. The lower the deductible, the sooner the insurance company begins paying to repair or replace the damage. A higher deductible means you're on the hook for a larger amount of the repair price, but your monthly premium will be lower. Deciding what level of deductibles to carry can be a difficult decision, as no one wants to think of needing insurance. However, the costs can be debilitating if something goes wrong.

Location

Location matters, in real estate and insurance. Each state has their own regulations for what must be covered for a homeowner. The more affluent a neighborhood, the more the policy will end up costing. The more valuable the property, the more you're pay for the insurance premium, because the value is higher. States set their own minimum requirements, so one state may require a lower deductible or a more inclusive policy than another state for a similar home. States not only set the minimum insurance requirements with homes, but they also set minimum state car insurance requirements.

A state with a higher likelihood of a natural disaster, such as a hurricane or tornado, will likely carry a higher probability of being damaged. This higher likelihood of damage from the weather will result in a higher premium, as the risk for your property has increased. The higher the likelihood of a weather event, the higher your policy will be, compared to a similar home in a state with a reduced risk of weather related damage.

A home in areas that are prone to weather events, such as Florida, California, Kansas, and Texas will cost more to insure than a home in areas less likely to be impacted by weather. Homes in states where the average home value is higher, such as New York, Connecticut, and California, will also increase the cost of a homeowners policy.

Getting the Best Price

We all want to get the lowest price possible for our home insurance policy. Understanding the factors that increase the premium prices before purchasing a home can help to save money from the beginning. Naturally, we can't always choose which state or city we live in, so for the state requirements, we're bound by the legislature of the state. However, we do have the ability to choose the size of our homes, where they are located in the city or state, and the level of deductible we carry.

By choosing the lowest deductible possible, we can save money on the premium price in every state, but will be expected to pay more out of pocket if disaster strikes. This can be very expensive when it happens, but looking at your state of risk, you can make an informed decision. The likelihood of a disaster can change whether it's worth saving money on the premium price, or if you need to file an insurance claim.

Choosing a home that fits your budget and needs, even if it's smaller than your dream home can save money too. Bypassing additions such as pools and barbecue pits can reduce your costs over the life of your home.

You can save money by understanding premium pricing calculations. By knowing what insurance companies are looking at with a home, you can make the smart decisions for your budget today, and when disaster strikes.

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