Homeowners Insurance in Utah

Utah is a beautiful state to live in. With its picturesque mountain views and stunning desert canyons, it’s easy to see why many families have found it a privilege to call Utah their home.

However, the same climate and geological features that make the beehive state such a wonderful state to live in can also be a danger to Utah homeowners. The same tectonic plates that created majestic mountains can also cause severe earthquakes. Utah also has severe season changes that increase the risk of property damage. Some of these dangers to your home are rare and others are more common, but all can lead to significant expenses. 

This is why getting homeowners insurance in Utah is important. Utah residents should ensure that they have the best financial protection possible for their homes by securing comprehensive insurance coverage.

In some areas, coverage provided by the insurance industry is more limited, but the great thing about Utah home insurance is that it is highly customizable and can cover various circumstances.

What Is Homeowners Insurance?

Homeowners insurance is an agreement that will compensate you for covered perils that result in the damage or destruction of your residence or personal items. This policy may also cover certain cases wherein a guest gets into an accident while staying at your house.

The three main functions of homeowners insurance in Utah are:

  1. To help you repair your home, yard, and other external structures
  2. Repair or replace lost personal belongings
  3. Take care of personal liability in case you are legally held responsible for bodily injury of a guest

Although getting Utah home insurance is not required by law, it becomes necessary if you take out a mortgage since this is a requirement from most lenders. This acts as an investment protection for a mortgage lender. Even if you do not have a mortgage, getting home insurance is always a wise choice as it provides coverage for both property damage and liability.

Utah House on Fire

What Does Utah Home Insurance Cover?

Homeowners insurance typically includes the following types of coverage:

  • Dwelling coverage – This coverage takes care of the expense for damage caused by a covered peril to a home. Any attached structures, such as a garage or deck, are also included in the coverage. Dwelling coverage is often calculated based on the square footage of the house and the cost it would take to rebuild it.
  • Other structures coverage Coverage for other structures in homeowners insurance helps pay for the expenses associated with repairing or replacing detached structures on the property. However, this is only valid if they are damaged by a covered event.
  • Personal property coverage – This type of coverage pays for the replacement of specific items that are damaged or stolen in the event of a covered loss.
  • Personal liability coverage – This coverage takes care of the legal expense in case you or a family member accidentally damages someone else’s property. Personal liability coverage can be used to pay for repair costs, make medical payments, and even pay legal fees.

Types of Homeowners Insurance

There are several types of homeowners insurance available. Some are more expansive than others, which is why it is essential to be aware of the capabilities of each one.

Although details can differ based on each insurance agency, the home insurance and optional coverage types are quite standard

HO-3 Insurance

HO-3 insurance is the most popular type of homeowners insurance policy. People who take out a mortgage will often be required to at least have this level of coverage.

HO-3 insurance typically covers damage to the house from almost any cause except those that have been specifically excluded. Where your belongings are concerned, HO-3 insurance policies often cover the following perils:

  • Damage caused by vehicles
  • Damage from aircraft
  • Damage caused by a power surge
  • Explosions
  • Fire
  • Lightning
  • Smoke
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Volcanic eruptions
  • Water overflow
  • Weight of sleet, snow, or ice

Beautiful Utah Home in Spring

HO-5 Insurance

The HO-5 type of insurance policy offers the broadest coverage when it comes to homeowners insurance in Utah. For those with this homeowners policy, the insurance provider takes care of the expenses from damage caused by most perils and is often available only for homes in low-risk areas.

Sometimes called a “comprehensive form,” HO-5 policies are usually more costly than HO-3 policies and may include additional benefits from insurers.

HO-1 and HO-2 Insurance

The least popular policies are the HO-1 and HO-2 homeowners insurance. These two are paid out only when specific issues listed in the policy cause damage to your property.

HO-2 insurance often covers just your home and the personal property within it. HO-2 policies are often called “named peril policies” since they only cover threats that are listed specifically.

Meanwhile, HO-1 insurance is the most bare-bones option of all homeowners insurance types since it covers losses for an even more limited number of perils.

How Rates Are Calculated in Utah

Every insurance agency calculates homeowners insurance rates differently than their competitors. However, there are factors that they commonly consider when providing a quotation. These are:

  • Age of the home
  • Square footage
  • Geographic location
  • Condition
  • Level of coverage required
  • Mortgage size
  • Credit score
  • Any previous claims record
  • Amount of deductible

Shattered Window Representing Property Crime

Property Crime Statistics in Utah

Although property crime continues to decline in Utah, it remains one of the most worrying offenses statewide. The  Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) released the following statistics on crime in The Beehive State for 2019:

  • Property crime – 69,546
  • Burglary – 8,871
  • Larceny theft – 53,937

Furthermore, Utah was found to have 2,169 property crimes, 276 burglaries, and 1,682 larceny reports per 100,000 inhabitants. Since these types of crimes are common, it’s a good idea to choose a policy that compensates you as the homeowner, for stolen or damaged property.

Deciding Which Homeowners Insurance To Pick

As mentioned earlier, regular homeowners insurance policies already cover disasters such as lightning, fire, and explosions. However, those who live in earthquake or flood-prone areas should consider getting these types of coverage in their policy.

Although an insurance company typically provides a recommended coverage limit, it is smart to do some research and consult a home insurance agent as well to make sure you get a fair plan.

Consider the following to ensure that your home has the right structural coverage:

  • Major factors that affect home rebuilding costs. Local construction expenses and the square footage of the structure should be taken into consideration.
  • Details that can affect home rebuilding costs. The type of exterior wall construction, type of the house, and the number of rooms are aspects that can impact home rebuilding expenses.
  • Building codes for the home. These codes are periodically being updated and could have changed since your residence was built. In case of damage, you may need to rebuild your home according to the latest building codes.
  • If it’s an old home with hard-to-replace features. Old homes that have special features that are difficult or costly to recreate may require you to purchase a modified replacement cost policy instead.

A Trusted Provider of Utah Home Insurance

It’s a smart choice to pay for home insurance but how much coverage do you really need? Do I need flood insurance in Utah? Should I get earthquake insurance?  An Ipsen Insurance agent will be able to answer all of these questions and advise you on which level of coverage utah residents should definitely obtain and which aspects of additional coverage you can potentially forgo. An Ipsen Insurance agent will also be able to tell you if you’re overpaying for homeowners insurance and help you to find a new policy if it turns out that you are. Our goal is to help you find homeowners insurance in Utah that is well-priced and able to meet your needs. Whether the place you call home is a condo, mobile home, or a traditional house, contact us today and we’ll help find the best policy for you.