Earthquakes are Mother Nature's way of letting off steam. Unfortunately, for residents of Idaho, these quakes - even small ones - can cause major damage. While California is notorious for earthquakes, Idaho is earthquake-prone as well. The state has a large number of fault lines, and scientists at Idaho State University say that a large earthquake may hit in the next few decades. It's important to make sure your home and belongings are covered by earthquake insurance before the shaking begins.
Earthquakes in Idaho
- Earthquakes are so common in ID that it is the fifth most seismically active state.
- Earthquakes happen in ID almost daily; however, most are too small to be felt.
- Idaho has experienced two of the largest earthquakes in the past thirty years, including the 1959 Hebgen Lake earthquake and the 1983 Borah Peak earthquake.
- Even a small earthquake can cause damage to a home.
Whether you already have a great home insurance policy or are just searching, it's important to get a good understanding of earthquake insurance in order to ensure that your belongings and assets have the extra liability insurance needed to cover earthquake damage.
How Do I Purchase Earthquake Insurance in Idaho?
Many homeowners assume that earthquake damage is covered by their homeowners insurance. However, this is untrue. In order to get earthquake coverage on your home and belongings, you must purchase a rider, or extra insurance coverage, specifically naming earthquakes as a covered event. Here are a few of the most common types of insurance, and how to secure earthquake coverage for each.
- Homeowners insurance: Most policies do not cover earthquake damage, so a rider must be purchased. If your current insurance agency does not offer earthquake insurance, you may need to find a new one.
- Renter and condo insurance: If you're a renter, chances are that structural damage arising from an earthquake will be covered by the owner's main insurance policy. Your belongings, however, are negated from that coverage. You can add an earthquake rider to cover your personal renters insurance at any point.
- Business insurance: If you own a business, you should review your policy to see if earthquake damage is covered. If not, your business may suffer large losses if an earthquake hits. Adding an earthquake rider to business insurance is a simple process. Additionally, you should consider adding a continuation of income insurance to your policy. In the event that an earthquake occurs, and you're unable to use your business, this extra liability insurance can cover the loss in income.
- Vehicle/Boat/RV/ATV insurance: Many vehicle owners opt to only carry liability insurance on their vehicles. Owners of boats, RVs, and ATVs may not carry any insurance at all. Unfortunately, this coverage does not extend to earthquake damage. The only coverage that will cover earthquake damage is comprehensive insurance.
What Does Earthquake Insurance Cover?
Unfortunately, each policy allows for different deductibles and coverages. Earthquake insurance typically carries a high deductible but provides substantial coverage in case of an earthquake. Earthquake insurance will typically cover earthquake damage to the foundation or basement, the structure of the home, and any attached structures. They also cover personal possessions, but typically at a lower rate than other catastrophe policies, like fire or flood.
The reason for this is somewhat logical - shaking is likely to damage structures, but unless it's a very extreme quake, household possessions like couches and dining room sets are not likely to sustain much damage. Some policies may not cover attached structures. If you have attached or detached structures on your property, be sure to ask your agent about extra coverage on those items.
How Much Is a Quote for Earthquake Insurance?
Earthquake insurance is usually affordable, as it typically requires a large deductible. When shopping for earthquake insurance, it's imperative to have all the necessary information ready in order to get accurate quotes for the type of house and possessions you own. Be sure to make yourself familiar with the following:
- Your home's location
- Your home's worth
- Building materials
- Age of home
- Value of belongings
- Any attached/detached structures
- Any expensive/heirloom/antique items or collectibles
- Preferred coverage amount
- Preferred deductible
Independent agents can be a great help here, especially finding you the ideal amount of coverage and deductible you'd want to pay. Because they can shop around to several insurers before giving you quotes, you'll be able to see a variety of options. It's a more efficient way of comparison shopping. Independent agents aren't biased - in the end, they want to work to get you the most ideal policy and aren't tied to a single parent company.
Are Discounts Available on Earthquake Insurance in Idaho?
Discounts are often available on earthquake insurance. You might be able to get one of the following:
- New customer discount
- Multi-policy discount
- Loyal customer discount
- Claim-free discount
- Educator discount
- Military discount
- Industry affiliation discount
How Do I Get Earthquake Insurance in Idaho?
When it comes to purchasing earthquake insurance, it's important to be sure you're getting the right coverage. An independent insurance agent is always available to help you discuss coverage options, find a policy, or even file a claim. They have years of experience working with Idaho insurance providers, enabling them to find you a number of quotes from a variety of companies.
Contact an agent near you today to find the most comprehensive earthquake insurance quotes at the best rates.