Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Earthquakes in California?
If you live in a place known to experience earthquakes, you should consider earthquake insurance. Even mild tremors from an earthquake can cause significant damage to a home’s furnishings and foundation. Most standard homeowners’ and renters’ insurance does not cover earthquake damage, so you’ll need a separate earthquake insurance policy.
What Does Earthquake Insurance Cover in California?
Earthquake insurance typically offers the following coverage:
- Dwelling coverage may cover damage to your home and other attached structures, such as a garage or deck, that result from an earthquake.
- Personal property coverage may help cover the cost to repair or replace your belongings, such as furniture or electronics.
- Additional living expenses coverage may help cover the costs of living elsewhere while your home is repaired due to earthquake damage.
Does Earthquake Insurance Cover Fires, Vehicles or Flooding?
Earthquake insurance is not the only coverage you may need in a high-risk area. The following are some areas that earthquake insurance typically will not cover:
- Fire—Fire is typically covered by your homeowner’s policy, even if the fire started due to an earthquake.
- Land—Earthquake policies will not cover damage to your yard, such as sinkholes.
- Vehicles—Vehicles are typically not covered by earthquake insurance, but your auto insurance policy should cover them.
- Flood—Earthquake policies will not cover flood damage. You will need to purchase an additional flood policy.
How Much Does Earthquake Insurance Cost in California?
The cost of earthquake insurance premiums depends on several factors, such as the following:
- The home’s location
- The age of the home
- The home’s distance from fault lines
- The construction materials of the home
- The cost of rebuilding the house
How to Prepare Your Home for an Earthquake
Homeowners may also make the following improvements to help protect from earthquake damage:
- Add anchoring bolts between your home and its foundation.
- Brace your water heater to the wall.
- Install automatic gas cut-off valves.
- Anchor bookcases and filing cabinets to walls.
- Use latches on drawers and cabinet doors to keep contents contained.
- Attach valuable electronics and small appliances to desks, tables or countertops.
- Secure large appliances to walls using safety cables or straps.
These methods can help stabilize your home in the event of an earthquake, and insurers may offer discounts for making specific home improvements.
How Much Earthquake Insurance Should I Buy?
If you are interested in an earthquake insurance policy, contact Muzio & Rovero Insurance Services. We can help you get the coverage you need.
This blog is intended for informational and educational use only. It is not exhaustive and should not be construed as legal advice. Please contact your insurance professional for further information.