South Carolina home insurance

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What South Carolina residents need to know about home insurance

South Carolina boasts some of the most beautiful natural landscapes in the country, but this gorgeous environment is not without its perils. As a homeowner, you can protect your investment by choosing the best policy for your area. Of course, a good decision begins with understanding South Carolina home insurance and the factors that affect it.

Living in South Carolina

South Carolina is a small state on the southeast coast of the United States. Its topography includes the Atlantic Coastal Plain in the east and rolling hills along the Blue Ridge Mountains in the west. Census data provide some general insight into the state's population:

       Population of over 5 million.

       Almost 2.4 million housing units.

       Median home value of approximately $182,000.

Hurricanes are a major concern on the state's coast. South Carolina ranks fifth in the nation in the number of hurricanes that have touched land in the past 170 years. The deadliest storm was Hurricane Hazel in 1954 with 95 casualties, and Hurricane Hugo in 1989 holds the state record for costliest damage.

All homeowners in the potential paths of coastal storms should look for flood policies in addition to home insurance coverage when comparing South Carolina home insurance quotes from VIU by HUB. Most homeowners policies do not provide flood coverage. Separate Flood Insurance is available in a policy from an insurance company or from the National Flood Insurance Program.

While hurricanes tend to get the most national attention, another risk to South Carolina property is damage from wildfires, particularly in the southern regions of the state. In 1976, over 30,000 acres of Horry County burned in the worst wildfire the state has ever seen. Most of these fires start due to either arson or burning debris that gets out of control.

South Carolina home insurance basics

South Carolina does not require that homeowners have insurance for their property. However, the bank that funds your mortgage may include it in the terms, so you are likely to be required to have a policy until you pay off the loan. A typical homeowners policy has these features:

       Property Damage coverage on the dwelling, attached structures and contents.

       Personal Liability.

       Loss of Use, or temporary living costs.

The average cost for South Carolina homeowners insurance is $200 a month. This is slightly lower than the national average of $230 per month. The price you end up paying each month can vary depending on the area of the state where you live. For example, homeowners in Hilton Head, Charleston, Myrtle Beach or other coastal areas can expect to pay higher premiums due to the heightened risk of damage during storm season.

One way to offset premiums is through credits from various insurers. Many providers offer mitigation credits to reward coastal homeowners who update their property with measures to prevent wind and water damage. Many insurers also offer discounts when you insure both your home and auto with them. It's a good idea to keep these factors in mind when comparing South Carolina homeowners insurance quotes.

Other factors affecting South Carolina home insurance costs

Where you live in South Carolina affects not only the kind of coverage you need but also how much it costs. The bigger the environmental risk your location poses to your home, the higher your premiums are likely to be or the more add-on coverage such as Flood or Fire Insurance you are likely to need. Several other factors can also cause your insurance rates to vary from the state average.

The current replacement value of your home and personal property

The more your home is worth, the more money it takes to restore it if disaster strikes. Consider a policy that provides Replacement Cost coverage for your dwelling instead of a more basic standard policy. Some policy forms will also cover personal property on a Replacement Value basis, instead of a depreciated value basis.  If you want to offset a higher monthly premium, you may opt for a higher deductible, although this means you would have to pay for some loss costs out of pocket before the insurance kicks in.

Safety features

Taking measures to protect your home from harm is something insurance companies like to see. Storm shutters that can withstand strong winds are an investment and may make your home seem like a lower risk to your provider. Installing a superior drainage system or elevating your home can also help protect it from flood damage during a storm.

Value of personal belongings

Most homeowners insurance policies include Personal Property coverage for furniture, appliances, electronics and other personal items that are damaged as part of a claim. Because homeowners polices may limit coverage on some types of belongings, you will need extra coverage for unique valuable belongings such as your:

       Art collection.


       Expensive jewelry.

       Antiques heirlooms.

Insurance provider

There are many ways that your eligibility for better rates can change over the years. A different provider may offer you a better deal that you didn't qualify for when you first purchased your home. Whether you are a new homeowner or have been in the same house for decades, comparing South Carolina home insurance quotes on a yearly basis using VIU by HUB keeps you informed of your options.

This information is intended for general informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute legal advice.




South Carolina Department of Natural Resources

US Census Bureau

South Carolina Emergency Management Division

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