Flood damage is often very expensive

Mississippi homeowners live with a subtropical climate and all the extreme weather events that climate brings, including severe thunderstorms and tornadoes. Home insurance and some type of coverage for flooding from hurricanes, is an essential purchase for a homeowner living along the southern coast.

How Much Does Mississippi Home Insurance Cost?

According to the Insurance Information Institute, in 2010, the average annual premium for homeowners insurance in Mississippi was $1,217. The level of coverage you select, as well as your deductible, will affect the cost of your insurance. Other factors, such as the age and condition of your home, the building materials used, and the geographic location of your home can affect your rate.

You can insure your home and your belongings for either the replacement cost or the actual cash value. The former is the amount it would take to repair a home with similar materials, or to purchase new possessions without deducting for depreciation. Actual cash value, on the other hand, deducts for depreciation. If you bought a television for $1,000 that is now valued at $200, the latter is the amount that you will receive. Replacement cost coverage are more expensive, but it may be worth it for consumers who can afford higher premiums.

What Does It Cover?

Home insurance protects you against damage to your home and personal belongings caused by natural perils such as fire, lightning, theft, vandalism, rain, wind, and other perils. Be aware that some perils may not be included or may be excluded from a home insurance policy. Liability insurance is usually, but not always, a part of most standard home insurance policies, and protects you against a potential lawsuit from someone who alleges that he or she suffered bodily injury or property damage due to your negligence.

Do I Have to Get Home Insurance in Mississippi?

Home insurance is not required by law in Mississippi. However, buying insurance can help protect your house and property against damage from unforeseen circumstances, and liability for accidents that injure other people or damage their property. The Mississippi Insurance Department has more information for consumers about home insurance.

Optional Coverage to Consider

  • Flood. Mississippi has experienced violent hurricane seasons in recent years, and many Mississippi homes were destroyed during hurricanes Ike and Katrina. However, a basic home owner’s policy does not cover flood damage caused by rising water. Mississippi home owners in participating communities can purchase flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program or a carrier. Since thunderstorms are common throughout the Southern U.S., even Mississippi homeowners in less flood-prone parts of the state should consider purchasing some kind of flood insurance.
  • Earthquake. Mississippi has been affected by numerous shocks from earthquakes located in neighboring states, although fewer earthquakes have occurred within state lines. Earthquake coverage is available from private insurance companies. It usually comes with a separate deductible and is attached to existing policies as an endorsement.
  • Windstorm. Windstorm damage is usually covered by standard home insurance policies. You should still check your policy to make sure that it covers all potential damages your home may suffer as a result of a windstorm or tornado. If windstorm damage is excluded in your insurance policy, you can obtain coverage through the Mississippi Windstorm Underwriting Association.

Mobile Home Insurance in Mississippi

Mobile home owners may purchase a specific policy that insures mobile homes, also known as manufactured homes. In general, mobile home insurance covers the structure of your mobile home and your personal belongings. It also includes liability coverage and covers living expenses if your home is damaged due to a covered peril or disaster. Some policies may provide additional protection for other structures located on the premises.

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