Homeowners insurance for military and veterans
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There are dozens of homeowners insurance companies on the market, but as an active duty military service member or veteran, there are some companies you might consider over others. Military personnel often have coverage needs that are different from civilians, especially while on deployment. Military and veterans home insurance can provide tailored protection for a variety of circumstances that service members might face. The following overview compares the best home insurance companies for active military and veterans, and provides guidance on the specific coverages and discounts that may be applicable.
Best home insurance companies for military and veterans
While the best home insurance for military members and veterans is going to be a highly personal choice, two companies definitely worth considering are USAA or Armed Forces Insurance. These providers only sell coverage to eligible military personnel and are experienced in insuring veterans’ homes. Here is some more information about the best military homeowners insurance companies:
USAA is one of the highest rated home insurance companies on the market. The company also earned a 2023 Bankrate Award for the Best Home Insurance Company Overall. The company has excellent customer service, good coverage options and low-cost policies. Home insurance policies from USAA include coverage for perils like fire, theft and windstorms, as well as identity theft coverage, earthquake coverage, home sharing coverage and military uniform coverage.
- Earn discounts for bundling two or more policies, being claims free and installing a security system in your home to protect against theft and vandalism
- Provides coverage for uniforms for active duty and deployed military members
- Personal belongings are insured with replacement cost, meaning that depreciation is not a factor
- Home Sharing Coverage available, which protects you and guests if you are renting out a room or entire home, a situation that may be applicable for military personnel who travel frequently
- Only military and qualifying family members are eligible to become USAA members and purchase USAA insurance policies
- No physical locations available for in-person service
Learn more: USAA Insurance review
Armed Forces Insurance
Armed Forces Insurance is another insurance provider that caters specifically to military personnel and veterans. Homeowners insurance policies from Armed Forces Insurance include coverage for your dwelling and personal belongings, plus liability insurance, medical payments and loss of use coverage. Armed Forces Insurance also offers a wide variety of optional coverage for everything from golf cart coverage to identify theft coverage and more.
- Long list of optional coverage, including animal liability coverage, water backup and sump overflow coverage, earthquake and flood coverage
- Unique discounts including gated community discount and security device discounts, as well as credits for home features like a new roof, windstorm mitigation and building code effectiveness
- AFI membership is extended to not only veteran and active members of military and qualified family members, but also U.S. Department of Defense and U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs employees, National Guard, Reserves and Coast Guard, and more
- Offers multiple types of insurance, including auto, water craft, pet and more, conveniently giving policyholders many options for all their insurance needs
- Received an National Association Of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Complaint Index score of 3.77 overall, indicating it received almost four times as many complaints as the industry average
- Unrated by AM Best for financial strength, following it request for its ratings to be removed
Those who want a more technology-based approach to home insurance can consider Lemonade. Although its home insurance is currently only available in 23 states and Washington, D.C., the carrier has become well-known for its easy-to-use mobile app and fast claims payouts (if the claim is approved). This can be particularly useful for those who want to manage their home insurance policies from anywhere and be sure that they can receive a claims decision immediately instead of following up with different company representatives. Its strong digital presence was recognized in its 2023 Bankrate Award win for as the Best Digital Insurance Company.
- As a Certified B-Corporation, Lemonade maintains strict social and environmental standards
- Unused premium is donated to various charities chosen by policyholders through Lemonade’s Giveback program
- Claims can be filed through the mobile app, and if approved, are paid out nearly instantly
- Easy online quoting and digital policy management through the mobile app
- Does not have tailored coverage for active military members like the other carriers on this list
- No in-person service or dedicated agent for those who want a single resource to help with their insurance policy
Learn more: Lemonade Insurance review
Discounts for military members and veterans
If you are looking for cheap home insurance, it is possible to find a home insurance company that offers discounts for military members and veterans, even outside of the companies we reviewed above. Here are some insurance companies that offer military discounts:
- Geico: If you are affiliated with any branch of the military, you might qualify for a home insurance discount through Geico. The company’s website states that military personnel and National Guard/Reserve personnel can qualify for a discount of up to 15 percent on their premium. You can also get a discount for going on emergency deployment, or being a member of a professional military association, like the Association of the United States Army (AUSA).
- Farmers: Through Farmers’ affinity discount, military members may be eligible for a discount on their home insurance policy. According to Farmers’ website, members, employees and retirees of certain businesses, groups and professional associations can get a lower premium. We recommend contacting a Farmers agent to find out if any military-specific membership groups qualify.
VA homeowners insurance
If you are thinking about buying a house, you might consider a loan through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). A VA loan is a type of mortgage that is only available to military personnel, veterans and their spouses. This type of home loan does not require a down payment and typically comes with competitive interest rates and property tax deductions.
When you purchase a home using a VA loan, you can also work with the VA to get veterans mortgage insurance. The VA does not specifically sell home insurance, but the organization might have relationships with reputable home insurance companies that they can recommend. They can also help you choose an appropriate amount of coverage for your home and personal belongings.
What happens to my homeowners insurance if I am deployed?
Official military deployment could affect your homeowners insurance coverage and your premium. Many home insurance policies include two clauses that place certain limitations on your coverage when you get deployed overseas, or even to another state. Here are the two clauses to look for in your policy documents:
- Occupancy clause: Home insurance policies typically only apply to primary residences where at least one person is living at all times. If you get deployed for more than a month and no one else is living in the home, your coverage may become invalid. This can occur because homes without occupants could have an ongoing issue that does not get reported in time before expensive damage is caused, or may be a target for burglary or vandalism. Military-specific insurance companies, like USAA, are less likely to have this clause. If your policy explicitly states that it will not cover your home while you are deployed, you can probably purchase an endorsement to insure your home during vacancy.
- War zone exemption: The other clause to be aware of is the war zone exemption. Your home insurance policy will cover your personal belongings anywhere in the world, but there may be an exception for war zones. Depending on where you get deployed, your home insurance policy might not cover the personal items you take with you. Most military-specific insurance companies will not have this exemption.
Frequently asked questions
The best home insurance company is different for everyone. For military personnel, the best option might be a company with military-specific discounts while a civilian may receive a better rate and discounts through another. To find the best home insurance company for you, we recommend comparing providers using your personal criteria and getting quotes from several carriers to see which one is the cheapest.
The average cost of homeowners insurance in the United States is $1,428 per year for a policy with $250,000 in dwelling coverage. However, every homeowner pays a different rate for coverage. Home insurance quotes are based on a variety of personal factors, like your state and ZIP code, your age, your credit score and your claims history.
If you are a first-time home insurance buyer, you are probably wondering how much coverage you should buy. As a general rule, you should have enough dwelling insurance to cover the cost of rebuilding your home back to its original condition. You should have enough personal property insurance to cover the value of your personal belongings, like furniture and clothing. Your liability insurance limit should be based on your personal financial assets that could be at risk in the event of a lawsuit.
Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze 2023 current rates for ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Rates are weighted based on the population density in each geographic region. Quoted rates are based on 40-year-old male and female homeowners with a clean claim history, good credit and the following coverage limits:
- Coverage A, Dwelling: $250,000
- Coverage B, Other Structures: $25,000
- Coverage C, Personal Property: $125,000
- Coverage D, Loss of Use: $50,000
- Coverage E, Liability: $300,000
- Coverage F, Medical Payments: $1,000
The homeowners also have a $1,000 deductible and a separate wind and hail deductible (if required).
These are sample rates and should be used for comparative purposes only. Your quotes will differ.