Getting Home Insurance in Washington DC
Homeowner’s insurance in Washington, DC covers structural damage to a home as well as damage to its contents from perils such as fire, severe weather, and burglary — excluding damages from earthquakes and flooding. Home insurance covers living expenses in the event that your home is no longer inhabitable, and reimburses you for any added costs for temporary housing, food, and storage. Insurance also covers liability in the event that a lawsuit or a claim is brought against you for someone’s injury or the damage of someone’s property due to negligence.
A standard homeowner’s policy may cover $200,000 for structural replacement, $160,000 for contents, $100,000 for personal liability, $1,000 for medical expenses, and $500 for the deductible, although you will need to choose the coverage that is right for your property. The average homeowner’s insurance premium in Washington, DC is $1,069, higher than the national average of $880, according to the Insurance Information Institute.
Factors of Home Insurance Rates in the District of Columbia
Your premium is determined by your house’s age and type of construction, its distance from local fire protection, its location, and the population and crime rate in your area. The property crime rate in the District of Columbia is 4,778.9 offenses per 100,000 inhabitants, higher than the national figure, which report at 2,941.9 property crime offenses per 100,000 inhabitants, according to the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Your claims history and credit score may also affect your insurance premium. Insurers will check your past payment history, the length of your credit history, homeownership, any inquiries on your credit, the number of open credit lines you have, the type of credit in use, and any outstanding debt. This information is used as one of many means of determining if the company will issue you a new policy or renew your existing one, or how much your premium will cost. It’s important to pay at least the minimum balance on bills on time every month and limit the number of new credit accounts you open to improve your credit rating. An insurer may cancel, deny, or choose not to renew coverage, increase your premium, or add a premium surcharge because of your credit rating and other factors. The insurer must notify you if they choose to take this type of adverse action.