Virginia Home Insurance
Whether you live in a beautiful home in Fairfax or close to
the water in Norfolk, as a homeowner you know how important it
is to have Virginia Home Insurance. There are so many things to
consider when purchasing a policy – is the homeowners insurance coverage
big enough to cover all the repairs? Are you covered if someone
is inured on your property? How much will a Virginia home insurance policy cost? We’ll
help you answer those questions and more, and even show
you ways to save on home insurance in Virginia, then help
you find a great insurance company at affordable
Basics of Virginia Home Insurance
When it comes to home insurance in Virginia, you live in one
of the more regulated states in the US. That’s why it’s
important to know some of the basics of Virginia home insurance
when you start shopping, so you can choose the best coverage to
fit your needs.
Virginia home insurance usually provides the
following types of coverage:
- Property damage coverage –
protects your home if damaged or destroyed by specific
- Personal property coverage –
repairs or replaces your personal property if damaged or
destroyed by a covered incident.
- Liability coverage – pays to
repair or replace other people’s property if damaged or
destroyed by you or a member of your family.
- Medical payments coverage –
covers the cost of medical treatment for persons injured on
your property or by you or your family members.
- Additional living expenses –
subsidizes the cost of living away from home while it’s
being repaired for covered damages.
Each of these types of coverage has specific limits
within your policy, so make sure you’re comfortable with those
amounts; if things cost more than the policy limits, you have
to make up the difference.
- Named Peril versus Open Perils
Policies – Named peril policies only cover
damage due to specific incidents like fire, theft,
vandalism, explosions, etc. Open peril policies cover any
kind of damage unless it’s specifically excluded from the
policy. Named peril offers less coverage, but open peril
- Buying Enough Insurance – you are
required to insure your home to at least 80% of the
replacement cost. If you don’t, your insurance company has
the right to prorate your benefits based on the amount you
should have bought. Most insurance companies have formulas
to determine a home value for each area, but to make sure
you’re okay, keep an eye on sales prices of comparable
homes in your area, or even get an appraisal every few
years if things are changing quickly. Remember, any repairs
must meet any new code standards too.
- Policy Minimum Standards – All
Virginia home insurance policies are required at minimum to
be an Actual Cash Value (ACV) policy. ACV coverage means
that you would receive the repair or replacement cost of
the dwelling, less depreciation. You would personally have
to make up the difference between the repair cost and what
the insurance company will pay. ACV is the cheapest form of
insurance because the level of coverage is the lowest.
Virginia Home Insurance Coverage Options
Fortunately there are several additional options you can add
to your policy based on your home and circumstances. Each will
raise the premiums on your home insurance policy, but that’s
still cheaper than paying for the damage
- Other Structures – like detached
garages, tool sheds, green houses
- Personal Property Endorsements– for
high valued items, like coin collections, antiques,
jewelry, cameras, musical instruments that exceed normal
- Trees, Shrubs and Plants – if
injured or destroyed during specific events, not just
things like windstorms or ice.
- Debris Removal – if debris
resulted and damaged your property during a covered
- Inflation Guard Endorsement –
guarantees replacement cost coverage of your dwelling, even
when the value has increased through inflation.
- Sewers and Drains Backup – not
normally part of home insurance policies, so buy it if your
property is prone to this.
- Building Ordinance Coverage –
pays extra cost to bring any repairs up to current building
Virginia Flood Insurance
Flood insurance isn’t a part of your homeowners insurance
policy. This type of coverage is issued through the National
Flood Insurance Program at Floodsmart.gov.
Money on Home Insurance in Virginia
- Combine home insurance and auto insurance with the same
company. Usually this will save about 10-15% off the
premiums for both policies.
- Ask for discounts. Things like burglar alarms, fire
alarms, smoke detectors, and dead bolt locks can reduce
home insurance premiums. It also helps if you have a fire
hydrant close to your home, or live near a fire
- Increase the deductible. Just raising the deductible
from the traditional $250 to $500 can make a big difference
in annual rates.
- Shop around. Rates for home insurance are determined by
the insurance companies based on their claims experience
for that area, so companies that have had fewer claims in
your neighborhood will offer lower rates.
For more money saving ideas, visit
Saving Money on Home
Managing a Virginia Homeowners Insurance
After you’ve purchased your policy, it’s important
to make the most of it:
- Create a Personal Inventory –
photograph and video all of your personal property, and
store this record either in a fireproof safe in your home
or in a safety deposit box. After a fire, it will make
trying to remember everything you own much easier.
- Additions or Renovations – tell
your insurance company each time you make a significant
change to your dwelling, so the coverage is kept up to
- Pay on Time – If you’re even one
day late paying your premium, the insurance company can
cancel your policy.
- Document All Claims – make sure
you keep a copy of every piece of correspondence and
visually document any damage when filing a claim. The
insurance company is also required to do this.
- Vacant Home – leaving a home
unoccupied could automatically suspend some coverage.
Information on Virginia Home Insurance
For more information, contact the Virginia State Corporation Commission Bureau
of Insurance, Tyler Building, 1300 E Main Street,
Richmond, VA 23219, 877-310-6560, or visit their
Shop for Virginia Home Insurance
Now that you know what to look for when evaluating a home
insurance policy, it’s time to start checking rates and
coverage. Researching this is easy – just enter your zip code
in the box below and you’ll be instantly matched to Virginia
home insurance companies offering coverage in your area.
Request free quotes from at least three or four companies, and
before you know it you’ll have the coverage you need at a rate
you like. Enter your zip code and start