Best Home Insurance in Florida
As a Florida homeowner, it is critically important that your home is adequately insured. But how can you get coverage that is both adequate and affordable?
There are a variety of important factors that will make a difference in what you’ll pay for home insurance in Florida including the physical location of the property, the age and condition of the home and the insurance provider you choose.
We’ve researched the top four homeowners insurance companies in Florida to help you find the right company and coverage for your needs.
The best homeowners insurance in Florida
- Best Overall: State Farm
- Best for military members: USAA
- Best for bundling: Allstate
- Best for Lowest Rates: Universal Property Casualty (UPC)
- Best for Customer Service: St. Johns Insurance
- Best Locally-Based Provider: Florida Peninsula Insurance Co
Compare ratings for Florida’s top insurance companies
|Carrier||AM Best||JD Power||SimpleScore|
|Universal Property & Casualty||B++||n/a||4.3/5|
|St. Johns Insurance||n/a||n/a||2.3/5|
|Florida Peninsula Insurance Co||A||n/a||3.8/5|
Florida’s best regional home insurance companies
Average cost of homeowners insurance in Florida
The average cost of homeowners insurance in Florida is $1,951, more than the national average of $1,211. This is because Florida is prone to natural disasters. Whether it’s flooding, wind and hail or even sinkholes, Florida is a disaster-prone state. It would be easy for an insurance company to lose all of its revenue after a single event if it didn’t charge the right amount— hence the higher than average premiums compared to the rest of the states.
Keep in mind that homeowners insurance rates in Florida will be heavily impacted by geographical location. Coastal areas of Florida may see higher rates than inland areas due to the increased risk of hurricane damage. Here is a breakdown of average rates for a home with $300,000 in dwelling and liability coverage.
[Read: Home Insurance Quotes, Explained]
|Universal Property & Casualty||$4,168||$2,084||$347||$80|
|Florida Peninsula Insurance Co.||$3,271||$1,636||$273||$63|
Another thing that affects the cost of home insurance in Florida is the size of the state. Florida is a pretty big place—there are nearly 24.5 million residents living among 67 counties. As a result, the cost of homeowners insurance in Florida varies significantly by zip code. According to the Insurance Information Institute, Florida is the second most expensive state to insure a home, with an average annual premium of $1,951 — right behind Louisiana’s $1,968. These states are extremely vulnerable to hurricanes and tropical storms, which drives up the price of insurance.
How to save on home insurance in Florida
There are a variety of ways you can save on your Florida home insurance. The first thing you should do is something you will want to do anyway, regardless of whether it saves you money on your homeowners insurance or not — and that is disaster proof your home.
Obviously nothing you could ever do would make your home 100% safe, but there are some things you can do that will better its odds.
- Install impact-resistant shingles on your roof. These shingles will weather both hail and falling limbs better than the standard roof shingle. It costs more than regular roofing, but it will last much longer in an area that sees a lot of severe weather.
- Use hurricane-proof windows and storm shutters. If you can’t afford to get new windows, look into storm shutters if you can. These can be purchased at most big-box home improvement stores and are relatively easy to install yourself. However, if that’s too far out of your comfort zone, a contractor shouldn’t charge that much to install them for you.
- If your primary motivator is to lower the cost of your home insurance premium, call your insurance provider before you do any work. Depending on your provider, it’s possible the discount won’t be worth your time and effort.
- Once the work is complete, call your provider and let them know about what you’ve done. They may require receipts and pictures before they’ll apply the discount.
The next option is the easiest and will save you time and effort, and it is bundling your auto and home insurance together with the same provider. Most insurance companies offer a discount for choosing them for both car and home insurance (many times as high as 20 percent). Doing this will save you money, but it will also save you time. When a disaster strikes, instead of potentially having to file a claim with two providers, you only have to do so with one.
Of course, there are other options as well. If you do choose to bundle your car and home insurance with the same provider, speak to an agent about what you can do to save on both.
Many insurance companies also offer discounts for the following:
- Paying the annual premium in full
- Alarm systems
- Smoke detectors
- Filing no claims in a period of time
- Updating plumbing
- Updating electrical
- Choosing a higher deductible
- Not smoking
- Being married
Finally, another thing to consider is improving your credit score. Part of your homeowners premium is based on your credit score. This is because insurance companies have found a correlation between low credit scores and claim frequency. A higher credit score means you are statistically less likely to file a claim. Though a high credit score is beneficial for a variety of reasons, speak to an agent first before you undergo the process of improving your credit to lower your homeowners insurance.
Florida homeowners insurance considerations
Compare similar quotes: All quotes may not be equal, both in price and coverage. If one quote seems unusually low or unusually high, look at the coverage levels quoted to ensure they are the same.
- Lower costs by implementing newer building codes: Check with your insurer about precautions that can lower your premium, such as reinforced garage doors, windows with impact-resistant glass and a roof with hurricane straps.
- Understand the difference between replacement value and actual cash value: Things that are covered for replacement value usually give you more money because you’re compensated for today’s value. With an actual cash value policy, you’re reimbursed based on the item’s current condition and value.
- Check for limitations on personal property coverage: Some categories of personal items have coverage limits, such as guns, jewelry, electronics and antiques. Make sure your policy adequately covers your belongings.
Hurricane insurance in Florida
Most coastal insurance agencies will encourage specific coverage for hurricane-related damages. That’s because some home insurance policies do not automatically cover hurricane damage, especially in areas that are prone to extreme weather, like Florida.
If you include hurricane coverage as part of your Florida homeowners insurance, you will have a standard deductible and a hurricane deductible that is usually higher than the standard. The hurricane deductible will only apply if you file a claim for hurricane-related damage.
Deductibles usually cost between 2% and 10% of the value of your property. In Florida, you also have the option to get a $500 deductible, but your annual premium will be much higher. You need to decide if you’d rather pay a higher rate on an ongoing basis, or take your chances and pay a higher deductible before reimbursements kick in when you file a claim.
Also make sure your policy covers “wind-driven rain.” Having this extra line item protects you from rain that causes damage because wind pushed it in an opening.
Flood insurance in Florida
In Florida, flooding is incredibly common. It can happen after a hurricane, tropical storm, storm surge or just heavy rain. Home insurance policies never cover flood damage, so we recommend asking your insurance agent about adding flood insurance policy. Make sure you understand exactly what’s covered (and not covered) in your flood coverage.Things like leaky pipes typically aren’t covered. Instead, flood insurance protects you in the event of water overflow caused from things like hurricanes, landslides and earthquakes.
How to choose the best Florida home insurance for you
If you’re shopping for home insurance, there are some resources that you can take advantage of. Florida’s Office of Insurance Regulation has a helpful online toolkit with information about the various types of home insurance coverage, what home insurance policies cover, and how much coverage you should get. You can also find information about home insurance from provider websites.
Before you purchase a home insurance policy, make sure to shop around and learn more about individual providers. Check out provider websites to see what types of coverage and discounts they offer. Get a few different quotes to compare prices and see which company can give you the lowest rate.
You can also read customer reviews from sites like the BBB, and review financial strength ratings from A.M. Best, S&P and Moody’s. There are plenty of free online resources available, so make sure to do some research before picking a provider.