Stats in Your State
We’ve compiled a number of graphs to illustrate the factors that make the home insurance industry and housing market tick, and many of them go hand-in-hand as the market swings. Take a glance at the graphs below to see the shifts in Washington’s housing market over the years and how your rates compare with others in the state.
Homeowner Insurance Premiums
Washington’s stable (albeit consistently rainy or dry) climate and lack of major natural disasters makes it a low-risk place to own a home, as evidenced by the graph of average homeowners insurance rates between 1999 and 2008. Each year, Washington beat the national average by at least $70 per year, and as much as $320 in 2008.
Renter Insurance Premiums
Although homeowners paid significantly less in premiums than the national average, renters were not so lucky. Their insurance rates run pretty close to the U.S. average. A young workforce of twenty- and thirty-somethings, who don’t yet own their own homes, contributes to a significant population of renters with higher insurance rates.
Existing Home Sales
Following a similar trend across the country during the 2000’s, existing home sales in Washington reached record numbers in 2005 before dropping by more than 50% in the following years. By 2009, the volume of existing home sales had dropped by over half to 82,300.
Flood Insurance in Region
Approximately 320 flood-damage claims were filed by Washington residents in 2011 and 2012, resulting in roughly $3.5 million in damages. Despite its steady rains, Washington ranked well behind California and Hawaii in terms of total damage from flooding.
Washington’s technology boom in the 1980s and 1990s is evident in this graph, which demonstrates that nearly half of all Washington homes have been built following 1980, with steady development through the 2000’s.
Rules in Your State
At the following links readers can brush up on the regulations around insurance claims and how property and casualty insurance claims and policies must be handled. To get assistance on researching and understanding these regulations, contact the Insurance Commissioner’s Office for guidance and consumer advocacy.
Representatives & Resources in Your State
Washingtonians can use the links and resources below to get in touch with their local government resources and representatives for consumer advocacy, education, and guidance on how to choose the best insurance policy possible.
Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner
PO Box 40255
Olympia, WA 98504-0255
File a Complaint
Consumer Guides and Brochures
Federal Emergency Management Administration: Region 10
FEMA offers support during disasters such as floods and storms, and also provides information and disaster preparedness plans in advance of catastrophes.