Owning a home in California is a large investment, and you want to make sure your investment is covered with home insurance. Whether you’re a new homeowner or a longtime owner who is reevaluating your current home insurance policy, MoneyGeek is here to help. MoneyGeek assessed and ranked the best home insurance companies based on customer satisfaction, affordability and financial stability to help California homeowners find the right coverage to protect their investment.
The Best Homeowners Insurance Companies and Cheapest Quotes in California for 2021
The 5 Best Homeowners Insurance Companies in California
While rates are important, they aren’t the only thing to consider when choosing homeowners insurance in California. If you ever need to file a claim, customer service will be vitally important, as will the company’s ability to pay that claim. You’ll want a homeowners insurance company with low complaints and high ratings in addition to offering the coverage options you need.
MoneyGeek has ranked the top 5 companies based on various factors in the chart below, including J.D. Power customer satisfaction ratings, financial stability ratings from AM Best, and overall cost. These rankings are a good way to find the best homeowners insurance in California.
When it comes to customer satisfaction and overall affordability, USAA can’t be beat. They offer the same basic coverages (dwelling, other structures, liability, personal property, loss of use, and medical payments) as the other top companies in California, but what makes USAA different is their exclusivity. Their coverage is only available to members of the U.S. military, veterans and their families. This means that, despite their excellent ratings, they aren’t available to the average person looking for home insurance in California.
When it comes to price, Allstate has the lowest rates in the state of California for most homeowners. They also rank highly with AM Best and J.D. Power. Allstate policies offer dwelling coverage, which protects the structure of your house. They also cover personal property damage and theft as well as damage to detached structures. Allstate offers liability coverage and guest medical protection in case someone is injured on your property. They also cover additional living expenses, which means that they will pay for a hotel rental if your home is uninhabitable after a covered loss.Read MoneyGeek's Allstate home Insurance Review
Travelers offers basic policies (dwelling, other structures, liability, personal property, loss of use and medical payments), but with a few differences from other companies. For example, many companies do not set a cap on loss of use coverage, but Travelers caps this particular benefit at 20%–30%. They do offer the ability to upgrade or add on additional coverages for a fee, however, so you may want to speak to your Travelers agent for more information.Read MoneyGeek's Travelers home Insurance Review
State Farm provides basic policies including dwelling, other structures, liability, personal property, loss of use and medical payments. State Farm also offers additional options, including an expanded replacement cost option of 20% on top of their standard dwelling insurance. They also cover homes that are often denied by other companies, such as manufactured homes, farms and ranches.Read MoneyGeek's State Farm home Insurance Review
Like other home insurance companies, Nationwide offers dwelling, other structures, liability, personal property, loss of use and medical payments coverage, along with two additional types of standard coverage. These additional options are credit card use, which covers unauthorized payments from stolen cards and checks, and ordinance/law insurance, which covers losses caused by enforcement of legal building requirements.Read MoneyGeek's Nationwide home Insurance Review
What Is the Average Cost of Homeowners Insurance in California?
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The cost of homeowners insurance varies widely from state to state based on a number of factors, including the average value of a home in that state and local laws and regulations regarding homeowners insurance. This means that states with a baseline coverage amount of $100,000, like Ohio and West Virginia, are going to be much cheaper than states where the baseline coverage amount is $500,000, like California and Massachusetts.
Despite having one of the highest baseline coverage amounts in the nation, the estimate for homeowners insurance in California is $101 cheaper than the national average.
Home Insurance Calculator: Estimate the Cost of Homeowners Insurance in California
There are many factors that impact your homeowners insurance rates. Some are common sense, such as the value of your dwelling and the age of your home. Other factors might not seem so obvious, such as your proximity to a fire department or the amount of personal property you will need to have covered under your policy.
Home Insurance Calculator
These are annual estimates. Get a personalized quote to determine your costs.
The Cheapest Homeowners Insurance Quotes in California
When it comes to cheap homeowners insurance in California, Allstate comes in at the top of the list. Allstate’s average premium for a $500,000 baseline coverage policy is $1,333, which is a whopping $669 lower than the state average. You can choose to alter your baseline coverage if it would be appropriate in your situation.
Baseline coverage is what insurance policies typically refer to as dwelling coverage, which is coverage for the physical structure of your home. This doesn’t include your personal possessions or external items such as solar panels or detached garages, though all of those additions are covered under other sections of your homeowners policy.
If you are looking for homeowners insurance in California, it is important to compare homeowners insurance quotes to make sure you get the best rate.
Cheapest Homeowners Insurance by Dwelling Coverage
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Best Cheap Homeowners Insurance Companies for Expensive Homes
Property values are generally higher in California than in other places. Although even smaller properties can have high value, there are still differences between insuring a standard home and a high-value property. California homeowners insurance rates change dramatically for a high-value home.
If you have a home valued at $2 million dollars or more, the cheapest insurance company for you would be ASI, at $3,991 for an average annual premium. ASI customers can access their policy online or work directly with an agent to make payments or review their coverage.
Cheapest Homeowners Insurance Companies for High-Value Homes
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Best Homeowners Insurance Companies if You Have a Pool
The presence of a pool can increase your insurance premiums because it increases the likelihood of flooding and accidental injury or death on your property, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have affordable insurance if you have a pool.
The most affordable insurance company for pool homes valued at $250,000 or less in California is Allstate, with a $659 average annual premium.
Cheapest Homeowners Insurance for Pool Home
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Cheapest Home Insurance in California if You Have Poor Credit
In most states, your credit score can be used to help determine your insurance premium. This is traditionally because people with lower credit are more likely to file a claim than people with higher credit scores. However, California is one of four states that does not allow insurance companies to use your credit score when determining your rates.
According to California Code of Regulations, insurance companies in the state are prohibited from using your FICO score and credit score to determine your premium amounts, which helps prevent people with the lowest credit scores from bearing the brunt of the cost of insurance.
How to Get Homeowners Insurance Quotes in California
When you’re ready to begin searching for the best homeowners insurance in California, you’ll need to make sure you have all of the information necessary to receive an accurate quote.
You will need to know the square footage of your home, the year your home was built, when any major improvements such as plumbing or electrical system upgrades were made, construction details, the age of your roof, how long your home has been insured, your liability coverage needs, details about any claims that were filed in the past five years, and details about potential dangers in your home such as swimming pools or pets.
Other Considerations for Homeowners Insurance in California
Insurance costs are dramatically impacted by your location. The weather in your area or the number of crimes in your ZIP code can have a noticeable effect on your annual insurance premiums.
According to the FBI, California saw a reduction in property crimes, burglary, and larceny from 2017 to 2018. Not only is this a positive shift for the wellbeing and safety of California residents, but it also means that California homeowners could see a reduction in their insurance premiums or, perhaps, a smaller increase than they would have otherwise received.
Hazardous weather conditions and natural disasters can also have a big impact on your insurance premiums. Making sure you are insured against common conditions in California is part of proper emergency preparedness. Below are some of the biggest weather and natural disaster-related issues California residents deal with on a regular basis, and an explanation of how these natural impacts influence your insurance rates.
MoneyGeek analyzed homeowners insurance premiums from 16 of the top insurance companies in California that were provided in partnership with Quadrant. Our analysis includes quotes from ZIP codes across California. Quotes were gathered with an average home profile of 2,500 square feet, built in 2000, with an average dwelling coverage value of $500,000, liability coverage of $100,000 and personal property coverage of $100,000.
About the Author
- AM Best. "Rating." Accessed July 27, 2020.
- Business Insider. "Here's the typical home price in every state — and what you can actually get for that money." Accessed July 10, 2020.
- FBI. "2018 Crime in the United States." Accessed July 10, 2020.
- First Street Foundation. "The First National Flood Risk Assessment Defining America’s Growing Risk." Accessed July 10, 2020.
- Flood Factor. "Find Your Home’s Flood Factor." Accessed July 10, 2020.
- Insurance Information Institute. "Facts + Statistics: Hail." Accessed July 10, 2020.
- Insurance Information Institute. "Facts + Statistics: Hurricanes." Accessed July 10, 2020.
- Insurance Information Institute. "Facts + Statistics: Wildfires." Accessed July 10, 2020.
- J.D. Power. "Homeowners’ Satisfaction with Property Claims Reaches Record High as Insurers Focus on Relationship Management, J.D. Power Finds." Accessed July 27, 2020.
- Verisk. "Wildfire Risk Analysis." Accessed July 10, 2020.