Stats in Your State
Whether you have lived in Louisiana for some time, or are considering relocating there to take advantage of tax credits and other incentives, the charts and data below are a good place to begin your research into insuring a home. Understanding and comparing the available options for home, renters, and flood insurance will help you select the type of protection best suited to your needs.
Homeowner Insurance Premiums
Since 1999, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, Louisiana home owner insurance premiums have both increased and remained consistently higher, sometimes much higher, than the national average. Louisiana's severe weather patterns, the emergence of mold claims, and the high cost of repairs are the main reasons for these higher premiums.
Renter Insurance Premiums
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Louisiana renters insurance premiums have, since 1999, remained higher than the national average, but have not increased significantly over time. Between 2007 and 2008, the average cost of a renters insurance policy in Louisiana actually decreased from $248 to $228, and to this day is still very affordable.
Homeowners and renters should keep in mind that property damage from a hurricane or flood most likely will not be covered by home or renters insurance. Residents of a flood zone can purchase flood insurance through the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).
Existing Home Sales
Since 2006, the year after Hurricane Katrina, and on into 2007 and 2008, the years of the subprime mortgage crisis, the number of existing home sales in Louisiana has significantly dropped. The U.S. Census Bureau reported an all-time high of 92,300 sales for 2006, which later plunged to a low of 51,600 in 2010. More recently, the number of sales of existing homes, including single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums, and co-ops, has increased slightly across the country, but numbers remain low due to limited inventory and tight credit.
Flood Insurance in Region
FEMA has designated the entire state of Louisiana as a flood zone. Homeowners and renters should keep in mind that property damage by a hurricane or flood most likely will not be covered by home or renters insurance. Instead, flood insurance can be purchased separately through providers affiliated with the NFIP, such as Louisiana Flood Insurance. From October 1, 2011 through September 30, 2012, Louisianans submitted 2,793 claims to the NFIP who made a total of $43,634,664 in payments.
The number of homes built in Louisiana has been dropping steadily since 1979. The U.S. Census Bureau reports that between 1970 and 1979, 382,802 homes were built. In 2005, the number of homes built totaled just 124,397. The high cost of home and flood insurance premiums and a still recovering housing market have contributed to the drop in home building as well as sales of existing homes.
Rules in Your State
Louisiana residents with questions about home or renters insurance, including insurance laws and regulations, can contact the Louisiana Department of Insurance through the department's website. The Louisiana Department of Insurance is tasked with enforcing insurance laws and regulations of the state.
FEMA has designated the entire state of Louisiana a flood zone. Specific areas of the state are further designated as high-risk or special flood hazard areas (SFHAs), while others are classified as low-to-moderate risk.
Flood insurance is required by federal law for buildings located in high-risk flood areas as a condition of receiving a mortgage from a federally regulated or insured lender.
The National Flood Insurance Reform Act of 1994, which amended the Flood Disaster Protection Act of 1973, requires the lesser of the following amounts of flood insurance coverage:
- The maximum amount of NFIP coverage available for the particular property type,
- The outstanding principal balance of the loan, or
- The insurable value of the structure.
Federal law does not require flood insurance for properties that are in low-to-moderate flood risk areas of the state.
However, if a property is determined to be in a high-risk flood zone as the result of map revisions, and the property owner is paying off a mortgage, the property owner is required by law to purchase flood insurance.
Representatives & Resources in Your State
Below are just some of the resources available to Louisiana homeowners seeking support on home and home insurance related issues.
Louisiana Department of Insurance
Office of Property and Casualty
1702 N. Third Street
P.O. Box 94214
Baton Rouge, LA 70804
Toll Free: (800) 259-5300
The Office of Property and Casualty protects consumers by making sure that insurance providers are in compliance with federal and state regulations. The office and its three divisions, the Insurance Rating and Policy Forms Division, Compliance Division, and Louisiana Property and Casualty Insurance Commission, provide the public with a forum for addressing the state’s major property and casualty issues.
Louisiana Housing Corporation
2415 Quail Drive
Baton Rouge, LA 70808
Main: (225) 763-8700
Toll Free: (888) 454-2001
Fax: (225) 763-8710
The Louisiana Housing Corporation works to ensure that Louisiana residents are afforded the opportunity to obtain housing that is safe, affordable, and energy efficient.
Louisiana Homeowners Resource Center
Toll Free: (800) 266-8538
The Louisiana Homeowners Resource Center, an initiative of Louisiana REALTORS ® provides consumers with information on housing and real estate issues and advocates for the rights of property owners. They can be reached by phone or through their website.
Office of Historic Preservation
Capitol Annex Building
1051 North Third Street
Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70802
P.O. Box 44247
Baton Rouge LA 70804
Phone: (225) 342-8160
Fax: (225) 219-9772
The Office of Historic Preservation preserves Louisiana’s heritage and encourages tourism by restoring historic buildings and revitalizing commercial districts. The office helps Louisiana property owners apply for National Register status and qualify for federal and state tax incentives.