On average, Washingtonians are paying $1,763 every month on homeownership costs. There are 3 million homes in the Evergreen State, 63% of which are occupied by owners.
- Population: 7,535,591
- Average value of homes that’s occupied by owners: $286,800
- Households: 2,755,697
- Average household income: $66,174
- High school grad or higher, percent of people age 25 years +: 91%
- Average travel time to work: 27 min
The average premium amount was sourced from the latest data of the Insurance Information Institute, and the statistical data from the U.S. Census Bureau.
With a booming tech industry, no personal state income tax, and great weather, no wonder Washington is dubbed one of the most desirable places to live in the country right now. For those who love waterfront living, Livability states that there are about 2,500 miles of WA marine shoreline. Washington’s second largest lake, Lake Washington, houses exclusive neighbourhoods while other areas in-state offer a wide range of waterfront housing options that suit varying budgets. If you and your family are environmentally conscious, you’ll love living here as Washington maintains a spot in the top five most environmentally friendly states nationwide. The League of American Bicyclists has dubbed Washington as the most bike-friendly state in the country in 2015, with the state investing in public transit to keep up with the growing population due to the bustling job market.
Washington homeowners insurance rates are undoubtedly some of the lowest in the country. The Evergreen State shows comparatively fewer numbers of homeowners insurance claims, which account for the lower rates here. Another major reason behind the lower insurance rates in WA is reduced risks of natural calamities. As per the data from Insurance Journal, Washington is one of the topmost states with a reduced rate of natural catastrophes. Now, while lower insurance rates is always a great news, it’s also advised to go for a comparative study on multiple insurers before zeroing on the final one. You may find a lower quote with the third company compared to the first 2 you study. Our free comparison tool allows you to see insurers in your area by simply inputting your Zip code in our form. To save time and money, use our tool to find the coverage you need at the price you deserve in no time. Read on for an engaging article about premiums for insuring your home in Washington.
Home insurance rates in Washington
Washington comes in the 44th position, in terms of homeowners insurance rates, out of 51 states, as per the report published by Insurance Information Institute (III). It’s annual average homeowners insurance rate is around $822 in 2016 (latest available data), which is $370 lower than the national annual average ($1,192). If we take a look at the monthly average, Washington homeowners pay something like $69, while the national monthly average is $99.
So, yes, if you are a homeowner in Washington, you are definitely in luck. But then, the insurance rate of a home is a largely determined by several factors. These include construction materials, rate of property crime in the area, age of home and so on. Your neighbor may get a lower quote if he is staying in a brand new house. Thus, it will be better to run a comparative survey on various companies to find out the most compatible offer and competitive pricing.
While the mean premiums are insightful, your own quote may not exactly match with the numbers cited above. Since the latest available data provided by III was from 2016, it’s more than likely that the average rates now have risen or stabilized. It’s still good to keep these averages in mind when shopping around, as it can give you a baseline to work with when the quotes from different insurers are coming in. Are you getting quoted a fair price or are some insurers charging more than others. If you or your home has certain factors that the insurer deems high-risk, more than likely your quote will be high as well. Don’t be afraid to talk with your agent as to why your rates fall above the state average.
Average Washington Home Insurance Premiums
|National annual average||$1,192||$1,173||$1,132|
Best homeowners insurance companies In Washington
The post below offers a brief review on three renowned homeowners insurance companies in Washington. The insurers have been chosen on the basis of percentage of market share. We have highlighted the coverage options of each of these companies along with discounts and other major factors. Besides, you will also get a glimpse of financial strength of each of these companies which is a major factor to check while choosing an insurer. We compiled ratings from AM Best and S&P. AM Best is one of the most trusted credit rating agencies in America that offers an independent opinion about the financial adequacy of insurers. S&P is a widely acclaimed financial services company and is one among the big three credit rating agencies.
Additionally, you will find JD Power Circles Rating received by each of these companies based on their 2018 U.S. Home Insurance Study. JD Power is an international marketing services information company and its ratings are a source of impartial, authentic and independent consumer ratings.
State Farm is known for extending high quality home insurance coverage for Washington homeowners. The home insurance policy from the insurer offers coverage for a variety of standard residential units. It offers protection against theft and major natural disasters. There are add-on options available for those who want insurance for personal belongings and home office. You can get flood protection if your local community is a participant in NCIP (National Flood Insurance Program). The company holds 17 percent market share in Washington’s home insurance market.
State Farm is widely reputed for its fast claims redressal process. The company allows easy claims reporting through their 24-hour claims reporting hotline where you can inform the company about your emergency any time. The company has also come up with a very beneficial Contractor Locator Service tool that will put you in touch with your local contractors to help in repair & renovation of your home after a disaster.
Moreover, the company shows solid financial strength. It has received A++ (Superior) from AM Best and AA (Very Strong capacity) from S&P. The company is backed by a long list of happy customers according to JD Power’s 3 (About average) out of 5 Power Circles Rating.
Liberty Mutual holds 14 percent share in the Washington homeowners insurance market. The company extends high quality home insurance at an affordable rate. The standard home insurance policy from Liberty Mutual offers coverage for both dwelling unit & personal property. It also covers the temporary living expenses that you have to bear until your damaged home gets back to functional order. There are different add-on options to choose from to strengthen your insurance protection. These include additional coverage for liability protection and valuables. Moreover, you can also avail the Liberty Mutual Home Protector Plus policy that assures extended coverage for the unforeseen costs of rebuilding the home after damage.
Liberty Mutual commands strong financial hold. It has got A rating (Excellent) from AM Best and A (Strong capacity) from S&P. J. Power has given it a decent 3 (About average) rating out of 5.
Much to the convenience of policy holders, the company has come up with a 24/7 hotline for claims. Liberty Mutual also has a dedicated mobile app where policyholders can report their claims. There is a 24/7/365 emergency repair service facility for those homeowners who have to repair their home after a catastrophic damage or vandalism.
Farmers owns 12.4 percent share in the Washington homeowners insurance market. A standard home insurance policy from Farmers extends coverage for the property & personal belongings of the homeowner. You will also get coverage for liabilities incurred, medical bills of people injured on homeowner’s premise and additional living protection for temporary shelter. Additional coverage is available for valuable items.
Farmers Insurance extends a wide variety of discount options. You will get discounts if you have a brand new home. You will also receive rate-cuts for installing energy-efficient measures and security devices. Then, there are discounts for non-smoker homeowners and for those who have recently upgraded their electrical and plumbing systems as well as the roof.
Farmers run a virtual resource center called Inner Circle. You will find various articles, checklists, tips and other resources that will help you with home maintenance, renovations, disaster prevention and home baby-proofing.
The company has received an A (Excellent) rating from AM Best, A (Strong capacity) rating from S&P and 3 (About average) Power Circles Rating from JD Power.
Washington Home Insurance Companies: Market Share and Summary of Ratings
|Rank||Insurer||Market Share %||AM Best||S&P||JD Power|
|8||Mutual of Enumclaw||3.0||A-||NR||NR|
Source: Insurance Information Institute, AM Best, S&P, JD Power
We are not able to review all of the home insurers in Washington. Therefore, it’s still a good idea to do your own research and look at local insurers to find the best rates. It’s important to do background checks on companies you’re not familiar with to ensure that you are signing a contract with a reliable and financially strong company, which will come in handy in the untimely event that you’ll have to to file a claim.
Guide to Washington’s first time home buyer programs
In 1983, the Washington State Housing Finance Commission (WSHFC) was established to aid first time home buyers in the state. According to Great Vancouver Homes, borrowers are first required to attend an education seminar geared to go through the process of buying a home. After finishing the seminar, the potential homeowner can now be pre-approved for a loan from a mortgage lender. The pre-approval process is meant to guide in choosing a home as you’ll know your mortgage and what you can afford. Then it’s time to go house shopping. It’s common to use the help of an agent to help with writing up a deal and closing in on an offer. We will now list mortgage and down payment assistance programs available to Washington residents.
Home Advantage First Mortgage Program
This program is for single-family residences in WA only. The WSHFC provides low interest rates and eligible borrowers must have an income below their limit of $97,000. This program is not only for first time home buyers but the property must be the borrower’s primary residence. In other words, this program does not apply to homes that are being rented out.
Energy Spark Home Loan
An optional add-on to the Home Advantage First Mortgage program, Energy Spark provides incentives to home buyers to purchase energy efficient homes or to homeowners to fix their older homes. The goal is to cut monthly utility costs with a green home.
House Key Opportunity First Mortgage
This program caters to first time home buyers, and similar to the Home Advantage program, helps borrows get a larger mortgage. Designed for low to moderate-income families, requirements are identical to the Home Advantage program with just a few exceptions. First, House Key are only for first time home buyers. Secondly, the income limits and loan limits are slightly less than other programs though they change from time to time. For more information, please visit WSHFC’s official website.
Along with the Home Advantage and House Key programs, that assists borrowers in Washington get a larger mortgage, and the Energy Spark add-on, there are programs that help with closing costs of the mortgage loan, also known as down payment assistance (DPAs). All of these programs are available all over WA, though it’s worth noting that there are local DPAs in certain cities and counties in the state.
Getting a comprehensive home insurance policy is one of the best things you can do to prepare for the future. It’s the only way to know you will have financial security in the event of a home emergency.
Earthquakes, fallen trees, and many other surprises can turn your home uninhabitable overnight. If you are not insured, you could be left with tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars of damages to pay for. This is far beyond the means of most Americans, even if they are doing well with their finances.
Get insured and you will not have to fear a catastrophic home event. You can rest easy knowing that your insurance company has your back when something goes awry.
How does home insurance work?
Like any insurance policy, Washington home insurance involves paying a monthly premium in exchange for coverage from the insurer. Your monthly payment gives you the right to have financial compensation for any damages that may happen to your house, so long as the damage is covered by the policy.
Most homeowners insurance policies are very broad in their nature. Natural disasters, damage caused by people, and much more is covered. With that said, you will want to go over your plan with your insurance agent so that you have a clear understanding of your specific policy.
The benefits of ensuring your home in Washington
The most obvious benefit of this insurance is that you will not have sole liability in the event of damage to your home. This makes a huge difference in your ability to recover from such an event.
Insurance can also give you the mental clarity that comes from not stressing out about future emergencies. Even if your home becomes completely uninhabitable overnight, you’ll have a policy that protects you from liability. This knowledge will make you feel more relaxed in your day-to-day life.
If your home becomes temporarily uninhabitable, your insurance company will often cover the cost for you to live at a hotel while repairs take place. You and your family will have a good place to live without spending a dime. This is a great way to get through an unfortunate home emergency.
After an emergency happens to your home, it will be too late to get coverage. Don’t put off the task of finding insurance for your home any longer. If you find a great policy today, you can enjoy the benefits for a lifetime.
For more assistance, please contact your local state department of insurance:
- Washington Office of Insurance Commissioner
- Email Form