Idaho homeowners insurance
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What you should know about Idaho homeowners insurance
Idaho is home to just over 1.8 million people. About 72% of the state's population owns a home and more than 60% of Idaho homes are worth between $200,000 and $500,000. Idaho homeowners insurance provides homeowners with financial protection for this substantial investment.
Idaho home ownership risks
Wildfires pose a significant risk to Idaho homeowners. In 2022, Idaho had the fifth-highest wildfire risk in the United States, with 175,000 properties facing extreme risk. The Bureau of Land Management responds to about 330 fires every year that burn about 270,000 acres of land.
Flooding is also an issue in the state, with over 168,000 properties facing a greater than 26% chance of experiencing severe flooding in the next 30 years. Snowmelt in the spring and flooding caused by the aftereffects of wildfires create much of Idaho's flood risk.
One of the state's biggest flood events occurred in the Clearwater River Basin in May of 1948. Heavy rain and snowmelt combined to cause flooding from Idaho to Oregon that caused 50 deaths and about $102 million in property damage.
Idaho homeowners insurance coverages
Idaho law does not require anyone to purchase homeowners insurance. However, if you owe money on your home, your lender may require you to buy coverage. Homeowner's policies usually provide coverage for both property and liability claims.
Dwelling coverage pays to repair or replace your home when a covered cause of loss, such as wind, fire, hail, vandalism or burglary, damages it. Most homeowners policies are open peril policies that cover any cause of loss that is not excluded. There are options with lower premiums, these are named perils policies that only cover the specific causes of loss listed in the policy.
Replacement Cost versus Actual Cash Value
You can choose to purchase a policy that provides coverage on either a replacement cost or actual cash value basis. Replacement Cost is most common on the dwelling portion of a homeowners policy, while personal property is often covered at Actual Cash Value. However, some companies offer Replacement Cost coverage on personal property in addition to Dwelling Coverage.
Replacement Cost pays to repair or replace your property at the current construction cost value, up to the limit on the policy. Actual Cash Value pays the replacement value, less a depreciation deduction. You can save money on your premiums by choosing an Actual Cash Value policy, but you’ll receive a lower settlement if you have a loss that will not be enough to replace your damaged home.
Other Structures coverage pays to repair or replace the structures on your property that are not your dwelling, such as fences, sheds, garages and gazebos. This coverage may have a separate limit from your Dwelling Coverage.
Contents coverage pays to replace personal property like clothing, furniture and electronics. Many policies exclude or limit claims for certain types of property, such as firearms, jewelry and cash.
Additional Living Expenses
Additional Living Expenses coverage pays for temporary expenses incurred because of a covered cause of loss that you would normally not have to pay, like renting a hotel room while your home is being rebuilt or repaired. Some policies may call this coverage Loss of Use.
Liability coverage pays for damages you are legally obligated to pay in the event of injury or damage to a third party. This coverage does not apply to auto accidents or business liability.
If someone who is not a member of your household gets hurt on your property, Medical Payments coverage may pay some of their medical bills. Unlike Liability coverage, this coverage may apply even if you are not at fault for the person's injury.
While flooding is one of the largest risks Idaho homeowners face, most homeowners policies exclude this coverage. To protect yourself from flood damage, you must purchase a separate flood insurance policy from a standard insurance company or a policy from the National Flood Insurance Program.
Idaho has the fifth highest earthquake risk in the U.S. The state experienced a 7.5 on the Richter scale earthquake in Hebgen Lake in 1959 and a 7.3 in Mount Borah in 1983. Homeowners insurance usually does not cover earthquakes. However, you can purchase a separate earthquake policy.
Average cost of Idaho homeowners insurance
The average annual cost of homeowners insurance in Idaho is $841, which is almost 50% less than the national average. This makes Idaho among the 10th least expensive states in the U.S. for homeowners insurance.
While residents of the state enjoy relatively inexpensive coverage overall, rates still vary by company. Find the best rate on the coverage you need by comparing quotes from different companies with VIU by HUB.
Factors that affect Idaho homeowners insurance rates
A variety of factors can affect how much you pay for homeowners insurance in Idaho.
The characteristics of your home play a role in how much you pay for homeowners insurance. Factors that impact your rates include:
• Type of construction.
• Roofing type.
• Square footage.
• Other structures.
Additionally, the age of your home and how many stories it has can influence your premiums. Generally, the more expensive the materials used in your home are, the higher your premiums will be. However, more fire-resistant materials may also save you some money.
Larger and more valuable homes usually cost more to insure because they cost more to repair or rebuild. Older homes may also carry higher insurance rates because of higher risks associated with older plumbing, wiring and roofing.
Because deductibles lower the amount that insurance companies pay on claims, the higher your deductible is, the lower your premium will be. Choosing a higher deductible is one way to reduce how much you pay for insurance.
Homes located in areas with higher crime rates, or a higher risk of natural disasters, usually cost more to insure. Homeowners in cities with higher average property values tend to pay higher rates than homeowners in areas with less expensive homes. Finally, the quality of your local fire department and how far your home is from the nearest fire hydrant can also affect your rates.
This information is intended for general informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute legal advice.