The devastation wrought by Superstorm Sandy in 2012 stressed the importance of a comprehensive homeowners insurance policy, as thousands of New Jersey residents were forced to rebuild and recover their homes at astronomical costs.
Although the average annual homeowners insurance premium in the Garden State is only about $1,092 — roughly equivalent to the national average — geographic location creates huge disparities in coverage and pricing options statewide. The provider you choose is another key determinant in how much you’ll pay for your policy — and how well you’ll be covered if disaster does strike.
Your home is your most valuable asset, and finding an insurance company that works with your budget and gives you peace of mind is no easy task. To assist in your search, we’ve outlined our top picks for New Jersey homeowners insurance and included a quote tool below so you can start shopping around and comparing prices now before making your final decision.
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Best Homeowners Insurance in New Jersey
The Simple Dollar’s top four picks:
- State Farm
- Amica Mutual
The hurricane deductible is a key factor to consider for home insurance consumers in New Jersey and 18 other states. According to the Insurance Information Institute, this feature involves using percentage deductibles for storm-related damage rather than dollar deductibles. The percentage deductible is based on the insured value of your home. Be sure to check the hurricane deductible details of the individual insurers as you shop for the best New Jersey homeowners insurance. Those details will determine how much cost you’re responsible for before your insurance coverage takes over in the event of hurricane damage.
Allstate extends coverage to New Jersey residents who live in just about any type of standard dwelling — be it a single-family house, a condo, or a mobile home. An Allstate House & Home policy protects your physical home, any other structures on your property, and your personal belongings as well as provides personal liability coverage.
Add-on coverage options from Allstate include a separate flood insurance policy — flood damage is usually not covered in a standard homeowners policy — as well as extra protection for valuables like expensive sports equipment, musical instruments, electronic data, or business property. Allstate also offers a green improvement reimbursement option, which can help cover the additional costs associated with using energy-efficient items and materials to replace damaged covered items.
Not only is a New Jersey homeowners insurance policy from Allstate affordable, but the company also offers plenty of discounts to lower your costs further. Standard discounts from Allstate include up to 30% for policy bundling, 20% for going claims free, and 10% for insuring a new or recently renovated home.
Other, more unique, price breaks to take advantage of include Allstate’s welcome discount, which will save you an additional 10%, as well as their Easy Pay plan, which gives you 5% off just for signing up for automated payments.
Besides discounts, another important feature of an Allstate policy to take advantage of is their comprehensive online resource center. Tools like the Premium Gauge, which allow you to see how factors like installing a security feature directly affect the price of your annual premium, and the Digital Locker, which allows you to keep a running inventory of your personal belongings and their respective worth, can save you money and help you better manage your policy.
State Farm is the largest provider of homeowners insurance coverage in the U.S. and remains a popular option for New Jersey residents due to the wide range of coverage options available and its quality claims-management services. State Farm extends standard coverage for multiple dwelling types, with excellent options for owners, renters, and landlords.
A homeowners insurance policy from State Farm protects against any damage made to your dwelling due to theft or the elements, but does not cover bodily injury. In order to receive this coverage, you must add it onto your policy. State Farm offers a host of other add-on options to customize your policy as well, including flood protection, home business insurance, and identity restoration coverage.
Filing a claim with State Farm is a hassle-free process that can be completed either in person with a local agent, online, or by calling the 24-hour phone claims center. State Farm’s mobile app and online resource center can further assist in the event of a disaster by offering organizational tools to help you respond more efficiently after you experience a loss.
The State Farm HomeIndex, for example, allows you to put together a synced and stored inventory of your possessions and their value that you can access from any online device. State Farm’s Safety Learning Center also offers tips, articles, and video tutorials on protecting your home and preventing future damage from occurring.
Amica offers exceptional customer service and claims management services, earning them the “Highest in Customer Satisfaction” rating by J.D. Power and Associates for 13 consecutive years.
In the event that your home needs immediate repair after suffering damage, Amica’s Home Repair Assistance Program will connect you to local and reputable contractors in your area and restore your home to livable condition quickly and efficiently. New Jersey residents impacted by Superstorm Sandy or other recent hurricanes may appreciate Amica’s online Storm Center, which offers preventative advice and information on emergency planning to ensure the safety of your family and your home should another natural disaster strike.
Amica’s already-low premium prices can be further reduced by taking advantage of the many discount options the company has available. Common discounts include those for multiple policies, a claims-free history, and new or recently renovated homes.
In addition to those price breaks, discounts are available for installing protective devices, going paperless with your billing and policy information, setting up an automatic payment plan, or opting for a higher deductible. Amica also extends extra discounts to reward loyal customers who have sustained a policy with the company for a certain number of years.
Chubb offers affordable and customizable coverage for New Jersey homeowners. Their Masterpiece Home and Contents policy offers broader protection than standard policies from many of their competitors. Prominent components of this policy include:
- Extended replacement cost coverage, which pays to have your home repaired or rebuilt.
- Cash settlement in the event of a covered total loss.
- Complimentary home appraisal service.
- Additional living expenses coverage to provide temporary residence if your home is unlivable after a covered loss.
- Extra protection such as electronic data restoration and lock replacement, at no extra cost to you.
Chubb offers customers personalized support to prevent claims. Their HomeScanSM service, for example, uses infrared camera technology to detect hidden problems within your home and intervene before they can pose a threat to your safety.
If a catastrophe does occur and a claim needs to be filed, Chubb provides prompt responses 24/7 to address your needs and work toward a settlement. The Chubb Masterpiece Protection Network then works to connect you with qualified contractors who specialize in areas like alarm system installation, water leak protection, and home repair to ensure that your home and safety are restored.
The 4 Best New Jersey Homeowners Insurance Companies
Recapping our top picks for home insurance in New Jersey:
- State Farm
- Amica Mutual
For more information regarding coverage and policy options for your home, check out our Guide to Home Insurance. Plus, see how your current provider stacks up against our top overall picks for the Best Home Insurance for 2016.