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Getting a reasonable rate on your home insurance is a priority for most homeowners. Comparison shopping is the best way to find a low-cost policy for the coverage you need. We evaluated average rate quotes for large home insurance companies in Louisiana to help you find an affordable home insurance policy.
Cheap Home Insurance in Louisiana Cost Comparison
Related: Best home insurance companies
Homeowners Insurance Cost Factors
Obtaining cheap home insurance in Louisiana will depend on many factors, such as:
- What it’ll cost to rebuild your home
- The types of material your home is made of
- The fire rating of your location
- Your home’s age
- Your location
- Your personal claims history
- The claims history of your home (even before you owned it)
- Your policy’s coverage amount and limits
- Your chosen deductible amount
- Your credit
Related: 10 ways to get cheap homeowners insurance
What Does Homeowners Insurance Cover?
The average HO-3 home insurance policy covers your home for any issue not explicitly excluded in the policy. Standard exclusions include power failure, neglect, war, nuclear hazard, earthquakes, sinkholes, vermin and insect infestations and wear and tear.
Your belongings (personal property) are protected for specific “perils” in your standard homeowners insurance policy. Fire or lightning, explosion, riot, tornadoes, theft and vandalism are some issues covered by home insurance.
A standard home insurance policy includes these main coverage types:
- Dwelling: This type of homeowners insurance pays to repair or rebuild your home if it’s damaged. It also covers attached structures, like a garage, porch or deck.
- Other structures: This pays to repair or replace structures not attached to your home, like a fence, in-ground swimming pool or shed.
- Personal property: This pays to repair or replace your personal belongings after an issue like theft or fire or smoke damage. Your personal property includes your clothing, furniture, clothing, jewelry, appliances, electronics and other such items.
- Liability: This pays for property damage and injuries you may accidentally do to others. For example, if your dog claws and bites someone, your liability insurance can pay for a settlement. Or if you’re sued, your liability insurance can help pay for a court judgment against you along with your legal defense costs.
- Medical payments to others: This covers smaller medical claims made by people not in your household, such as guests to your home, regardless of fault for the injury. For example, if a visitor trips on a loose rug, medical payments coverage can pay for any minor injuries sustained. Coverage amounts are small, such as $1,000.
- Additional living expenses: If you’re unable to stay in your home after an event covered by your policy (like a fire or tornado), additional living expenses coverage pays for extra costs. Covered expenses can include a hotel stay, meals out and other necessary services, like storage.
Related: How much home insurance do you need?
What’s Not Covered by Homeowners Insurance?
Common exclusions found in your standard home insurance policy include events and issues such as floods, earthquakes, sinkholes, mudslides, mudflows, power failure, war, intentional loss, wear and tear and vermin and insect infestations.
It’s smart to carefully read your policy to make certain you understand what is excluded from coverage.
Most Common Disasters in Louisiana
Louisiana residents don’t see a lot of variety in the disasters they battle. The most common catastrophes homeowners contend with are hurricanes, floods and severe storms. Residents on the Gulf Coast have it the worst, as they are often hit hardest by hurricanes and storm surges.
In 2020, multiple hurricanes hit Louisiana and battered much of the same area of the state. Hurricane Laura hit Cameron in August, and was the tenth-strongest hurricane in terms of wind speed to make landfall in the US Nearly 10-foot high storm surges caused severe flooding and many homes were damaged. Then six weeks later, Hurricane Delta made landfall only 12 miles from where Laura did. Due to flooding and overturned vehicles, I-10 and US 90 were closed.
Hurricane Zeta then slammed into Louisiana three weeks later, taking almost the same track. Again homes were damaged, power was offline for many and the rain and storm surge flooded neighborhoods along the Louisiana Gulf Coast. If you were in the path of the storms, you were hounded by winds or rain for weeks on end.
Louisiana home insurance policies have special windstorm and hail, named storm or hurricane deductibles. These deductibles are a percentage of your dwelling coverage and typically range from 2% to 5%. So if your home is insured for $300,000 and you have a 5% deductible, it would amount to $15,000.
Luckily for Louisiana homeowners, state laws say your insurance company cannot impose more than one such special deductible per calendar year. That means if you endured all three hurricanes in 2020, you would have just one hurricane deductible to pay for the damages.
Disasters by Month in Louisiana
August and September have historically been the busiest months for declared disasters in Louisiana with 14 each month. May come in close with 13 events over the years.
Disasters in Louisiana by Year
Louisiana homeowners deal with an average of about two declared disasters a year. In 2020, one of the busiest years for disasters in The Pelican State, residents faced multiple hurricanes and tropical storms, resulting in six declared disasters.
Flood Insurance in Louisiana
A standard homeowners insurance policy doesn’t cover damage from floodwaters. And with flooding becoming more frequent, you may want to consider flood insurance if your property is at risk.
Louisiana residents are no stranger to severe flooding. In May 2021, continual rounds of storms hammered Louisiana dumping up to 15 inches of rain in western Louisiana in a 12-hour period. Over 2,500 homes were flooded or reported some sort of damage. Then in August, Hurricane Ida caused storm surges and heavy rains again, causing flooding in many parts of the state.
Many areas across the nation experience flooding that’s destructive and expensive, but that is not declared a federal disaster. Here’s a roundup of the number of recent floods in Louisiana.
Financial help from the government after a flood may be insufficient. It’s best to have your own flood insurance to rely on. Many people who have flood insurance buy it through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), a federal program. Private flood insurance is also available if you shop around.
FEMA’s Individuals and Households Program (IHP) can provide monetary and direct assistance after a major disaster or emergency, if you qualify. This program helps people find housing after a problem directly caused by a disaster that insurance or other sources doesn’t cover.
Earthquake Insurance in Louisiana
Louisiana is an area with relatively low seismic risk, but it doesn’t mean earthquakes cannot occur. The state lies within the Gulf Coast Basin tectonic area, with the greatest threat of a tremor coming from the New Madrid Seismic Zone.
In April 2021, a 3.1 magnitude earthquake hit Louisiana by the Texas border. Fortunately, the minor shake didn’t cause much damage.
If you’re nervous about earthquakes and want coverage for earthquake damage, you’ll need to buy a separate earthquake insurance policy. A standard home insurance policy doesn’t cover earthquakes.
Earthquake insurance typically covers:
- Additional living expenses
- Other Structures
Earthquake insurance may have a separate deductible from your home insurance, usually between 10% to 25% of the dwelling’s policy limit.
Tips for Buying Homeowners Insurance
Whether you’re looking to switch insurance companies or about to close on your first house, you want to buy an affordable policy without sacrificing coverage. Here are tips for both longtime homeowners and newcomers:
- Assess your costs to rebuild. Ask a trusted contractor or your insurance agent what the cost would be to rebuild your home with similar materials, based on labor costs in your area. You want your dwelling coverage amount to be right around this estimate.
- Consider add-on coverage for your personal property. If you have pricey possessions, like jewelry, antiques or musical equipment, you might want to consider scheduling personal property to have them adequately covered.
- Learn the benefits of replacement cost compared to actual cash value. Consider replacement cost coverage for your home and belongings to get the amount you need to replace your home and items with new versions. If you’re fine with a depreciated value, then actual cash value is the option for you.
- Evaluate how much liability coverage you need. You should buy an amount that matches the value of your assets that could be taken from you in a lawsuit, or at least $300,000.
- Look for any coverage gaps. Some home insurance companies offer add-on benefits that extend beyond what’s covered in a standard policy. For instance, a water or sewer backup add-on can help pay for damage from these issues.
- Research financial ratings. Check financial strength ratings from companies such as AM Best or Standard & Poor’s. Some banks may not finance your mortgage unless your insurance company has at least an “A” financial strength rating.
- Compare quotes from multiple insurance companies. The cost of the same homeowners policy can vary significantly among insurance companies. If you don’t shop around, you won’t know how much you can potentially save.
- Ask for discounts. Make sure you’re getting all the discounts that you qualify for. For example, you may get a discount for certain home security features, or for buying auto and home insurance from the same company.
Average home insurance rates were calculated using data from Quadrant Information Services. Rates are based on a policy with dwelling coverage of $300,000 and liability coverage of $100,000.