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home insurance phoenix AZ

home insurance phoenix AZ

Navigating the world of home insurance can be a daunting task, especially when you’re trying to find the best coverage for your home in Phoenix, Arizona. This article aims to be your comprehensive guide to understanding and selecting home insurance in Phoenix. We’ll delve into the basics of home insurance, explore the different types of policies available, and discuss the factors that can affect your insurance rates.

We’ll also provide insights into the most common homeowners insurance claims in Phoenix, the average cost of home insurance, and the top insurance providers in the area. Additionally, we’ll touch on optional coverages you might consider adding to your policy, ways to lower your insurance rates, and significant insurance terms you should know. Whether you own a single-family home, a condo, or an older property, this guide will help you decide about your home insurance needs in Phoenix, AZ.

Understanding Home Insurance

Home insurance, also commonly referred to as homeowner’s insurance, is a type of property insurance that covers a private residence. It is a comprehensive policy that combines various personal insurance protections, which can include losses occurring to one’s home, its contents, loss of use (additional living expenses), or loss of other personal possessions of the homeowner. It also provides liability insurance for accidents at the home or at the hands of the homeowner.

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Home insurance is crucial because it protects consumers’ homes and personal property. Insurance can provide the primary source of rebuilding funds in the event of a total loss. It also provides liability coverage for legal actions from injuries or damage from another person on their property. A homeowners insurance policy won’t prevent damage to your home or belongings, but it may help provide a financial safety net if the unexpected occurs.

Homeowners insurance is a form of property insurance that covers losses and damages to an individual’s residence, along with furnishings and other assets in the home. It also provides liability coverage against accidents in the home or on the property. Homeowners insurance provides financial protection in a disaster or accident involving your home.

In addition to providing financial protection, having homeowners insurance helps safeguard your investment, cover unexpected expenses, and provide peace of mind in case of unforeseen incidents. It is important to remember that having the right policy will ensure you have adequate protection in case of any damage or loss.

Types of Home Insurance Policies

Home insurance policies come in various forms, each designed to cater to different types of homes and coverage needs. Here are the main types of home insurance policies:

**HO-1 (Basic Form)**: This is the most basic form of home insurance, often called a “bare bones” plan. It typically covers ten specific perils, including fire, windstorms, hail, explosions, riots, aircraft, vehicles, smoke, vandalism, and theft. However, it does not include personal property or liability coverage. Due to its limited coverage, it’s not commonly offered by insurance companies and is not usually accepted by mortgage lenders.

**HO-2 (Broad Form)**: An upgrade from the HO-1, the HO-2 policy covers your home and personal property against 16 named perils. These perils include all those covered by HO-1, including falling objects, weight of ice, snow, or sleet, and accidental discharge or overflow of water or steam. Some HO-2 policies also cover personal liability.

**HO-3 (Special Form)**: This is the most common type of home insurance policy. It provides more comprehensive coverage than the HO-2, covering all perils unless specifically excluded. Common exclusions are for earthquakes or floods. It covers your home’s structure, contents, liability, medical payments, and additional living expenses. It’s primarily available for single-family homes, but some multi-family homes and townhouses may also need this coverage.

HO-4 (Renters Insurance)

HO-4 insurance, commonly known as renters insurance, protects tenants from financial losses related to their personal property within a rented residence. This policy typically covers personal belongings against named perils such as theft, fire, and vandalism. It may also include liability coverage for legal and medical expenses if the policyholder is found at fault for injuries to others. Additionally, HO-4 insurance can provide financial assistance for temporary living expenses if the rental property becomes uninhabitable due to a covered peril.

HO-5 (Comprehensive Form)

The HO-5 policy also called the comprehensive form, offers the most extensive coverage among standard home insurance policies. It covers the home, other structures on the property, and personal belongings on an open-perils basis, meaning it insures against all risks except those explicitly excluded. Common exclusions may include earthquakes, floods, and intentional damage. This policy type is ideal for homeowners seeking broad protection for their property and possessions.

HO-6 (Condo Insurance)

HO-6, or condo insurance, is tailored for individuals who own a condominium or co-op unit. It covers personal property, interior improvements, and liability claims. The policy also includes loss of use coverage, which helps with additional living expenses if the unit becomes uninhabitable. It’s important to note that while the condo association’s master policy generally covers common areas and the building’s exterior, the HO-6 policy is responsible for the unit’s interior and the owner’s belongings.

HO-7 (Mobile Home Form)

An HO-7 policy is specifically designed for mobile homes, providing coverage similar to an HO-3 policy but tailored to mobile or manufactured homes’ unique needs. It covers the mobile home and personal property and includes liability coverage. The policy protects against perils named in the contract, which typically encompass a wide range of potential risks.

HO-8 (Older Home Form)

The HO-8 policy is intended for older homes where the cost to rebuild might exceed the market value, often due to outdated materials or design. This policy form provides coverage for the dwelling, personal property, and liability, similar to an HO-3 policy. Still, it typically pays out on an actual cash value basis rather than replacement cost. This means depreciation is taken into account when determining payouts for damages.

Cost of Home Insurance in Phoenix, AZ

The average cost of homeowners insurance in Phoenix, Arizona, is approximately $1,890 per year or $158 per month. This is slightly higher than the state average, which varies across different sources but is generally reported to be between $1,268 and $1,986 per year.

Compared to other Arizona cities, Phoenix’s average homeowners insurance cost is higher than Tucson’s average of $1,375 per year. Other cities in Arizona have varying average annual rates, such as Apache Junction ($1,575), Avondale ($1,550), Buckeye ($1,475), Casa Grande ($1,590), and Chandler ($1,515).

It’s important to note that these are average costs, and the actual cost can vary significantly based on factors such as the location of the house, the quality and age of the home, the homeowner’s insurance claim history, and the homeowner’s credit history.

Factors Affecting Home Insurance Rates

Home insurance rates are influenced by various factors, including the house’s location, the home’s quality and age, the homeowner’s insurance claim history, and the homeowner’s credit history.

Location of the House

The location of a house can significantly impact home insurance rates. This is due to local weather patterns, crime rates, population density, and proximity to emergency services. For instance, homes in areas prone to severe weather or natural disasters or in neighborhoods with high crime rates may have higher insurance premiums. Similarly, homes far from fire stations or in densely populated cities may also face higher rates due to increased risk.

Quality and Age of the Home

The quality and age of a home are also crucial factors. Older homes, particularly those over 30, have higher insurance premiums. This is because older homes are often built with materials that are more susceptible to damage or are hard to replace, leading to higher repair costs. The condition of the home’s systems, such as plumbing, electrical, and heating, can also affect rates, with poor conditions leading to higher premiums.

Homeowner’s Insurance Claim History

A homeowner’s insurance claim history can significantly impact insurance rates. Home insurance premiums increase on average by about 7% to 10% after a claim. This increase can be more or less depending on the type of claim made and the number of claims on the homeowner’s record. Homeowners who file multiple claims will generally pay higher rates than those with no claims on their record.

Homeowner’s Credit History

A homeowner’s credit history can also affect home insurance rates. Insurers may view homeowners with poor credit as riskier, leading to higher premiums. Conversely, those with good credit may be offered lower rates.

Other factors that can influence home insurance rates include the home’s construction type, the presence of risk factors such as swimming pools or certain dog breeds, the proximity to bodies of water, and the cost of construction and labor in the area.

Optional Home Insurance Coverages

Homeowners can add several optional coverages to their insurance policies to enhance their protection. These optional coverages include flood insurance, earthquake insurance, and replacement cost plus, among others.

Flood Insurance

Flood insurance is a separate policy that covers damage caused by floods. Most standard homeowners insurance policies do not cover flood damage. The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), managed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), provides flood insurance to property owners, renters, and businesses. This coverage can help them recover faster when floodwaters recede. It’s important to note that there is typically a 30-day waiting period for an NFIP policy to go into effect.

Earthquake Insurance

Traditional earthquake insurance covers damage caused by an earthquake. Like flood insurance, earthquake damage is not typically covered by standard homeowners insurance policies. This type of insurance insures “pure loss,” meaning they will assess the value of the damage caused by an earthquake. Some insurance companies stopped insuring earthquakes in the 1990s after projections suggested that most homes would experience damage that does not exceed their insurance deductibles.

Replacement Cost Plus

Replacement cost plus is an optional homeowners insurance policy endorsement that increases coverage on the insured property by a percentage of the policy’s stated limit. This endorsement can help long-term owners offset home depreciation by providing additional funds to rebuild after a total loss. For example, if a homeowner had upgraded their policy with a cost plus, or what’s also called extended replacement coverage, they’d receive 125% or 150% of the stated coverage limit. This additional insurance payout can help offset inflated construction prices so the home can be rebuilt without the owner having to pay what may be a considerable shortfall.

Other Optional Coverages

Other optional coverages that homeowners can add to their policies include identity theft restoration, water backup, scheduled personal property, business property, and sports equipment coverage. Identity theft restoration covers the cost of legal fees, lost wages, and other related costs if your identity is stolen. Water backup covers damage caused by your drain backing up or the sump pump breaking. Scheduled personal property covers valuable appraised items like engagement rings or antiques. Business property increases limits for business-related items stored in your home, like inventory. Sports equipment increases coverage for expensive gear like golf clubs, ski equipment, and more.

Understanding Insurance Terms

Homeowners should familiarize themselves with several common insurance terms when shopping for home insurance. Here are some of the key terms:

**Peril**: A peril refers to a specific risk or cause of loss covered by an insurance policy, such as fire, windstorm, flood, or theft.

**Hazard**: A hazard is a condition that increases the likelihood of a loss occurring. For example, a wood-burning stove could be considered a hazard because it increases the fire risk.

**Named-Peril Policy**: This type of insurance policy only covers loss or damage caused by perils specifically listed in the policy.

**Exclusion**: An exclusion is a provision in an insurance policy that denies coverage for certain perils, people, property, or locations.

**Endorsement**: Also known as a “rider,” an endorsement is a written agreement attached to a policy that expands or limits the benefits otherwise provided.

 **Actual Cash Value (ACV)**: ACV refers to the replacement cost of property minus the diminished value from its age, use, or wear.

**Replacement Cost**: Replacing lost or damaged property without deducting for depreciation. It’s often higher than the actual cash value.

**Deductible**: A deductible is the money a policyholder must pay for a loss before the insurance company pays a claim.

**Premium**: The premium is the amount of money the insurance company charges for coverage. It’s typically paid monthly, semi-annually, or annually.

**Liability Coverage**: This part of a homeowners insurance policy provides coverage if the policyholder is legally responsible for injury to others or damage to their property.

**Personal Property**: Personal property refers to all tangible property (other than land) that is either temporary or movable, such as furniture, jewelry, electronics, etc.

**Underwriting**: Underwriting is the process an insurance company uses to decide whether to accept or reject an application for a policy.

Ways to Lower Home Insurance Rates

Homeowners can employ several strategies to lower their home insurance rates:

**Shop Around**: Different insurance companies have different underwriting guidelines and rate-setting parameters. Therefore, comparing quotes from multiple insurers to find the best and cheapest policy is beneficial.

**Raise Your Deductible**: Increasing your deductible, the amount you pay out-of-pocket toward a loss before the insurance company pays a claim, can significantly reduce your premium. For instance, raising your deductible from $1,000 to $2,500 could save you an average of 11% yearly.

**Bundle Home and Auto Insurance**: Bundling home and auto insurance with the same company can lead to substantial savings. Some insurers offer discounts of up to 25% for bundling. However, it’s important to compare the cost of bundled policies with the cost of separate policies to ensure you’re getting the best deal.

**Improve Your Credit Score**: A good credit score can reduce home insurance premiums by 20% or more. Paying bills on time, maintaining low credit card balances, and correcting any errors on your credit report can help improve your credit score.

**Make Your Home More Disaster Resistant**: You may save on your premiums by making your home more resistant to disasters. This could involve adding storm shutters, reinforcing your roof, or modernizing your heating, plumbing, and electrical systems to reduce the risk of fire and water damage.

**Improve Your Home Security**: Installing security measures such as smoke detectors, burglar alarms, or deadbolt locks can often lead to discounts on insurance premiums.

**Seek Out Other Discounts**: Insurance companies often offer discounts for various reasons, such as not having any smokers in the house, recently buying your home, paying your premium via automatic bank payments, or choosing paperless billing.

Insurance for Different Types of Homes

The type of home you have can significantly affect the type of insurance policy and coverage you need:

**Single-Family Homes**: These are typically covered by standard homeowners insurance policies, which provide coverage for the home’s structure, personal property, liability, and additional living expenses if you’re temporarily unable to live in your home due to a covered loss.

**Condos**: Condo insurance is different from standard homeowners insurance. While the condo association’s master policy typically covers the exterior of the building and common areas, individual condo owners need their policy to cover the interior of their unit and their personal property.

**Older Homes**: Older homes may require more specialized coverage due to the potential for outdated electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems. Some insurance companies offer “modified replacement cost” policies for older homes, which provide for repairs using modern materials and methods while preserving the home’s architectural character.

**High-Risk Homes**: Homes in areas prone to natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes, or hurricanes may require additional coverage beyond a standard policy. For example, flood insurance is typically purchased separately through the National Flood Insurance Program.

Remember, it’s crucial to understand what is and isn’t covered in your policy. Always read through your policy and ask your insurance agent or company representative if you have any questions.

Common Homeowners Insurance Claims

Homeowners insurance claims are often filed due to various types of damage or loss. Here are some of the most common types:

**Wind and Hail Damage**: Wind and hail damage is the most common type of homeowners insurance claim, accounting for 45.5% of all claims in 2020. This can include damage to the roof, siding, or home interior caused by strong winds, rain, or hail. The average claim for wind and hail damage is around $11,695.

**Fire and Lightning Damage**: Fire and lightning damage accounted for 23.8% of all claims in 2020. Homeowners insurance generally covers damage from lightning strikes, including damage to the home’s structure, personal property, and additional living expenses if the home needs to be repaired or rebuilt. The average fire and lightning damage claim is significantly higher than other types of claims, at $77,340.

**Water Damage**: Water damage, including damage from frozen or burst pipes, leaking roofs, and sudden plumbing or appliance issues, accounted for 19.9% of all claims in 2020. However, insurance policies usually don’t cover water damage that occurs gradually over time, such as damage from slow leaks, deteriorating plumbing, or seepage through the home’s foundation. The average claim for water damage is $11,650.

**Theft**: Break-ins and theft of personal property account for a smaller percentage of homeowners insurance claims. In 2020, these incidents accounted for 0.6% of home claims and usually resulted in an average loss of $4,415.

**Non-Theft Property Damage**: This type of claim can take various forms, such as a tree falling on the roof or a utility truck backing into your garage. The average claim cost for non-theft property damage is $6,598.

It’s important to note that the frequency and type of homeowners insurance claims can vary based on location, weather patterns, and the specific coverage included in a homeowner’s insurance policy.

Sample Home Insurance Quotes By Coverage Amount in Phoenix, Arizona

Coverage Amount Annual Premium Monthly Premium
$200,000 $1,200 $100
$300,000 $1,800 $150
$400,000 $2,400 $200
$500,000 $3,000 $250

Best Home Insurance companies in PHX Arizona

**State Farm**: State Farm is one of the largest insurers in the U.S. and offers a long list of coverage options. Its policies generally include extra dwelling coverage if it costs more than expected to repair or rebuild your home. State Farm also has the cheapest home insurance in Arizona, with an average rate of $916 per year.

**Chubb**: Chubb is known for its comprehensive coverage and unique complimentary services, such as HomeScan, which can signal potential leaks and electrical hazards. Although Chubb markets itself mainly to owners of high-end homes, it could be a good fit for anyone looking for robust coverage with all the extras.

**Auto-Owners**: Auto-Owners is another top-rated home insurance provider in Arizona. While specific details about their offerings were not found in the search results, they are generally known for their broad coverage options and excellent customer service.

**Nationwide**: Nationwide is recommended for its comprehensive coverage and excellent ratings. It is the best home insurance company in Arizona, open to all homeowners, with an overall rating of 4.58.

**ASI Progressive**: ASI Progressive is part of the Progressive Group of Insurance Companies. Specific details about their offerings in Arizona were not found in the search results, but they typically offer a wide range of coverage options and discounts.

**Amica**: Amica ranks as Arizona’s top homeowners insurance provider, scoring 4.1 out of 5. They offer a comprehensive range of coverage options and discounts.

Remember, the best home insurance provider for you will depend on your specific needs, including your home type, the coverage you need, and your budget. It’s always a good idea to get quotes from multiple providers and compare their offerings to find the best fit for you.

Frequently asked questions


How much is homeowners insurance in Phoenix AZ?
The average cost of homeowners insurance in Phoenix, Arizona, is approximately $1,890 per year.
What is the best home insurance?
According to an analysis of more than 10 home insurance policies and 15 companies, Amica is considered the best homeowners insurance company. However, other sources also list Chubb, Erie, Farmers, NJM, Openly, State Farm, and USAA as top homeowners insurance companies.
Which is the cheapest homeowners insurance?
Among large insurers, State Farm has the cheapest annual home insurance on average at $1,500. However, Erie offers the lowest rates of the property insurers analyzed, making it a top choice for customers looking for cheap homeowners insurance coverage.
How much should you spend on homeowners insurance?
The amount you should spend on homeowners insurance depends on various factors, including the value of your home, your location, and your personal financial situation. On average, homeowners in the U.S. spend around $1,820 per year on home insurance.
What is the average home insurance cost in AZ?
The average cost of home insurance in Arizona varies depending on the source. According to NerdWallet, the average annual cost of home insurance in Arizona is $1,530. However, other sources report the average cost as $1,982, $1,667, and $1,886.48 respectively.
Is home insurance mandatory in Arizona?
Home insurance is not mandatory by law in Arizona. However, if you have a mortgage on your home, your lender will likely require you to have homeowners insurance to protect their investment in the property. Even if it's not required, homeowners insurance is highly recommended to protect your home and belongings from damage or loss.