One in every 20 insured homes has a claim each year, according to the Insurance Information Institute. Given the volatile weather that the Mountaineer State experiences, you might pay more to protect your house. West Virginia is 39th nationally in premium costs for homeowners insurance.
When considering coverage, there are a variety of factors to examine. The first is personal property. With this coverage, you receive reimbursement for the fair market value of your items if they’re damaged due to hazard events.
This is one area of coverage you can adjust as needed. To demonstrate, if you have more expensive items such as artwork or designer furniture you’ll want more coverage. Some insurance carriers want you to have another policy for jewelry and other expensive items.
In addition, most homeowner’s insurance has an “acts of God” provision that says the company doesn’t have to cover events such as earthquakes or floods. You’ll want to purchase a separate policy for these kinds of disasters if you want the coverage.
Along with personal property limits, you’ll want to consider the insurance provider. You can examine key factors such as customer satisfaction scores, financial strength through credit rating agencies and costs. A good rule of thumb is to compare multiple providers to find the best homeowners insurance companies. earns high marks for its financial strength and customer satisfaction, as it scored a three out of five rating with J.D. Power & Associates.
Best homeowners insurance companies in West Virginia
Here are some of the best West Virginia homeowners insurance options:
- Allstate: earns high marks for its financial strength and customer satisfaction, as it scored a three out of five rating with J.D. Power & Associates.
- Nationwide also earns a good reputation. It scored an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, demonstrating the company’s ability to resolve customers’ claims.
- State Farm earns high marks, scoring four out of five in J.D. Power’s customer satisfaction rating. The provider also earns a great reputation with credit reporting agencies, indicating it has the financial health to make good on its promises to policyholders.
- USAA If you are in the military or have a family member who is, then USAA is the best option available. They earn the highest customer satisfaction rating, scoring a five-out-five with J.D. Power and they have affordable rates.
When searching for the best providers, we took several factors into account. The first is customer satisfaction. For this, we compared carriers’ scores through the J.D. Power & Associates customer satisfaction survey.
We also took into account a provider’s financial strength (AM Best rating) to determine its ability to make good on paying claims. Price and a company’s Better Business Bureau grade were also key drivers in finding the best carrier.
With these factors in mind, here’s how each provider compares to each other:
|Provider||J.D. Power||BBB Grade||AM Best rating|
|USAA||5 out of 5||NR||A++|
|State Farm||4 out of 5||A+||A+|
|Nationwide||2 out of 5||A+||A+|
|Allstate||3 out of 5||A+||A+|
Average homeowners insurance cost in West Virginia
The average cost of a policy in West Virginia is $940 annually, according to the Insurance Information Institute. Here’s how West Virginia compares cost-wise to some of its neighbors:
|State||Average premium||Difference to WV||National rank|
The reason why West Virginia’s rates are a little higher is due to the weather. The state is more prone to flooding and severe weather, and weather events such as lightning, wind and hail continue to be the two biggest reasons for wind and hail continue to be the two biggest reasons for homeowner’s claims.
Homeowner insurance coverage options in West Virginia
Homeowner insurance policies consist of several different coverages. As noted above, one of the more important features is personal property coverage. This is the maximum amount provided by the carrier to cover damage to your personal items. If you have more valuable items, your coverage should reflect this.
Another component is personal liability insurance. If someone gets injured in your home or on your property, this coverage provides for their medical expenses. It can also protect you financially if you, a family member or a pet are legally responsible for an injury not on your property. If you have frequent visitors, a pet who’s skittish around other people or a larger property, you might consider getting an umbrella policy to provide added protection.
Lastly, if you live in an area prone to flooding, you’ll want to check with your provider about flood insurance. Typically, this isn’t provided in a traditional homeowner’s insurance policy (under the Acts of God provision). You might have to purchase an additional rider for this coverage.
Common causes of homeowner’s insurance losses in West Virginia
Personal property claims compromise most of homeowner’s insurance claims. The biggest cause of property damage is wind and hail, as over 38% of claims were for this reason. The second leading cause was lightning and fire damage, with 35% of claims resulting from this event. Because of West Virginia’s severe weather, these are the two claims that contribute the most to insurance losses throughout the state.
Frequently asked questions
What’s the cheapest homeowners insurance in West Virginia?
Your cost depends on a variety of factors such as the age of your dwelling, where you live in the state and how much coverage you require. Traditional carriers such as State Farm or Allstate are great choices because they provide a good mix of value and customer service.USAA is the smartest choice if you’re in the military because of the service and affordable rates
How do I get homeowners insurance in West Virginia?
You can visit a carrier’s website to begin the quoting process. From there, many will contact you via phone, where you’ll have to answer questions about your home. If you prefer an in-person option, companies like Nationwide and State Farm have local agents who can guide you through the process.