As a homeowner living in Texas, you’ll likely contend with plenty of hazards that can damage your home. Our state is filled with extreme weather events including severe thunderstorms, tropical storms, tornadoes, hailstorms, and much more. There are wildfires, power surges, and even damage from the weight of snow and ice which can cause harm to your home.
Hazard insurance is there to make sure that you don’t have to face such setbacks alone. Your policy will provide compensation for several hazards, also known as perils, that cause a loss to your home. Understanding how hazard insurance protects you can make the difference between protecting your interests and suffering a lapse of coverage requiring you to pay out of pocket to restore your loss. Explore the protection hazard insurance provides homeowners and which policies work best for your needs.
Do I Need Hazard Insurance for My Home?
Yes, you have a responsibility as a homeowner to protect your home from a variety of perils. Homeowners without coverage may face insurmountable circumstances after a loss, making it impossible to restore the home to where it once was. Hazard insurance is not blanket coverage and is only part of what makes home insurance so great. Still, these protections are important measures to protect your home and your financial future.
Hazard Insurance is a Part of Your Homeowners Insurance Policy
When someone mentions hazard insurance, they are likely referring to the portion of your home insurance coverage which protects your home’s structure from hazards. One of the most common scenarios involving hazard insurance occurs when you are purchasing your home. The term “hazard insurance” is often mentioned by lenders and refers to the portion of your homeowners insurance policy that protects your home’s structure from hazards. Although homeowners aren’t required to purchase home insurance by law, it is always recommended to protect you from having to restore your home after a loss and suffering harsh financial ramifications. Home insurance policies can often be a requirement for receiving a mortgage as your lender will want to ensure their investment.
A standard home insurance policy will protect you in many ways including your home, your possessions, and even your finances from potential liability issues. Your policy will even protect other structures on your property from the same perils your home might face. Take a closer look at the three coverages your home insurance policy uses to protect your home and property from the various hazards it may face:
1. Dwelling Coverage
Your home’s dwelling coverage is the main part of your home insurance policy. Here, your home’s structure receives protection such as its foundation, your walls, an attached garage, and any other structural component of your home. Homeowners should carry an adequate amount of dwelling coverage to rebuild a home that is completely destroyed by a peril. It is important to review your dwelling coverage from year to year as the cost of labor and building materials continue to grow and your coverage may not be enough to cover a severe or total loss in the future.
2. Other Structures Coverage
Many homes have additional structures on the same property which require protection. Common examples include detached garages and fences. Hazard insurance alone may not cover these losses and investing in a standard home insurance policy can help you gain peace of mind and save money after a loss. Some limits apply, but homeowners’ other structures are usually protected for as much as 10% of the home’s value.
3. Personal Property Coverage
Your electronics, clothing, furniture, etc. These items will all receive protection from damaging perils thanks to your home insurance policy. Beyond protecting against natural disasters, your policy will also provide coverage for your belongings against other perils such as theft or vandalism. An often overlooked feature of personal property coverage is that it will also follow your personal items when they are outside of your home. For example, if you were to be on vacation and your purse is stolen from inside of your rental car, your homeowners insurance will still cover the loss when you submit your claim.
Limits for personal property coverage will apply and usually won’t reach more than half of your home’s coverage limit. If you have possessions that are higher in value, there are additional endorsements available to cover your personal items. Speak with an agent to determine which additional protection options will help you avoid coverage gaps.
Beyond these coverages, a home insurance policy is built to protect you in unique ways. There is liability coverage and medical protection if someone is injured while visiting your property, and loss-of-use coverage to help you find shelter and food while suffering a severe loss. Having a complete home insurance policy is a safety net every homeowner can benefit from.
Hazard Insurance Quotes
You can receive a free, accurate quote with just a few clicks of a button thanks to our easy-to-use home insurance quote tool. This snapshot of your home insurance coverage can help you understand an estimate of what it costs to insure your home, but it is important to remember that each home is different, and the factors that determine how your quote is created will vary.
When it comes to your home insurance premium, each insurance brand is going to assess the level of risk you possess as a client. If you are a risker client to insure, you can expect higher premiums. The opposite is true of clients with less risk, as they’ll receive cheaper premiums on average. Every insurance brand will assess different factors according to their own unique weights and measures including your home’s age, location, the amount of coverage you require, and more.
As you can see, many variables go into creating a home insurance premium, but homeowners have options to lower their rates. Discounts, including lower rates for bundling, are available to help curb the cost of your insurance policy. You can also lower your home insurance costs by choosing a higher deductible.
Natural Disasters Continue to Raise Home Insurance Coverage
The inconvenient truth is that home insurance rates continue to rise. Premiums are increasing as insurance providers continue to face financial obstacles and adjust. There are different reasons including inflation and the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic for this upward trend, but the most prevalent of them all is the costly rise in natural disaster-related claims.
Wildfires continue to decimate homes in states such as California and Colorado, the Gulf Coast is still reeling from years of harsh damage from Hurricanes, and homes in Texas were severely affected during the Winter Storm Uri in 2021. States such as Iowa and Kentucky have also dealt with devastating damage caused by tornadoes and windstorms. According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), homeowners insurance premiums are rising faster than inflation, and the trend is expected to continue. Additional economic factors continue to add more variables into the mix, furthering the spike in home insurance rates.
As reported by the Washington Post, “When the pandemic hit, lumber producers feared a repeat of the Great Recession. They cut production and unloaded inventory. But demand soared, catching them by surprise. The price of lumber spiked to $1,500 per thousand feet of board in March, a 400 percent year-over-year increase.”
There are many different stages to homeownership. Some homeowners are first-time buyers, others have finished paying off their homes, and there are a million other scenarios in-between. No matter where you find yourself on the spectrum, protecting your home at any stage is a critical part of protecting your financial interests. The rise in homeowners insurance costs makes it even more imperative to review your coverage and your needs to secure the lowest rate possible for your coverage before rates rise any further.
Find the Right Insurance Policy for Your Home
For now, the average homeowner in Texas will spend $1,789 per year for coverage. If the trends found by S&P Global Market Intelligence of an 11.4% increase continue, you’ll find yourself paying much more when it is time to renew your coverage. Freedom Insurance Group understands the challenges facing Texans when it comes to protection and we are here to help.
We’ve partnered with more than 25 top-rated insurance brands that are financially strong and offer a range of coverages. This is important because instead of working for a single entity, our agents work for you, the customer. As we discovered, there are many different coverage needs and factors that go into creating a home insurance quote and because no two homes are the same, it is necessary to shop around. By comparing your coverage among our many different insurance providers, we can find you the lowest price on the market for your coverage.
On average, our clients save 40% on their coverage when switching and we can help you do the same. Ask an agent or receive your free online home insurance quote for an instant estimate of your premium and coverage.