Charleston Homeowners Insurance

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Charleston, the largest city in South Carolina, is a hub of the southeastern United States. It’s a beacon of the Lowcountry that’s not only a trendy place to visit every year, but also a historic landmark in the history of the nation.

It’s not a surprise, then, that it’s one of the fastest-growing cities in the country. More and more people are moving to Charleston and the surrounding suburbs. As homes get gobbled up, the importance of quality homeowners insurance is ever-present.

Average Cost of Homeowners Insurance in Charleston, South Carolina

The average home cost of home insurance in Charleston, South Carolina, is about $2,303 for a $200,000 house. The average increases to $3,706 for a $350,000 house. Home insurance is always a worthwhile safety net to protect your property and financial well-being in case of disaster. And, If you have a mortgage, you’re required to have a homeowners insurance policy.

Charleston’s location means it’s susceptible to severe weather often, too. The threat of hurricanes, floods, and even tornadoes underlines the importance of protecting your property further.

 The cost of homeowners insurance isn’t uniform for every person. Rates vary due to a plethora of factors, an important one being the replacement cost of your home. We break down and compare the average rates from select insurance companies in Charleston.

Average Cost of Homeowners Insurance in Charleston for a $200,000 House


Allstate$1,830
Foremost$4,354
Nationwide$2,592
State Farm$2,903
Travelers$1,924
UPCIC$1,713
Average$2,303

Average Cost of Homeowners Insurance in Charleston for a $350,000 House


Allstate$2,913
Foremost$8,421
Nationwide$4,260
State Farm$4,060
Travelers$3,120
UPCIC$2,979
Average$3,706

Key Factors to Consider in Premium Pricing

The rates in this article are from the South Carolina Department of Insurance​. They reflect actual prices from insurers that write at least $1 million in premiums in the state. However, they don’t reflect policy discounts or other variations in price that may apply to your particular policy.

Claims History

The average rates were factored by utilizing data from policyholders who haven’t filed a home insurance claim in the last five years. Insurers believe a policyholder who has filed a claim is more likely to file another in the future, which poses an increased financial risk for them. So your premiums may be higher than these averages if you’ve recently filed a claim.

Credit Rating

Your credit rating is an aggregate of your outstanding debts and payment history. Insurers in most states use it as an indicator of your ability to pay your premiums on time. If you have a bad credit score (less than 600), you’ll likely pay higher premiums than someone with a fair credit score (600 to 700) or a good credit score (700+). The average rates were determined by using a fair credit score rating.

Home Construction Type

The two most common types of home construction are frame and masonry. Frame homes are built with wood, while masonry homes are made of brick or concrete. Generally, premiums on masonry homes are lower because they can withstand the elements better, even though they may have a higher replacement cost.

Average Cost of Homeowners Insurance in Charleston: Breakdown

According to our list of popular carriers, home insurance rates in Charleston for $200,000 houses were about 40% lower than rates on $350,000 houses.  Universal Property & Casualty and Allstate had the lowest average rates at both price points. 

But, as we mentioned earlier, many factors affect insurance rates. To get a more accurate picture of the cost of homeowners insurance in Charleston, we can break down the numbers even further.

Generally, the older a house is, the more expensive it is to insure. Older homes are more likely to not be up to modern building or safety codes, which means they are inherently riskier and more averse to damage from severe weather.

Older houses may also have features that aren’t easy to replace because they’re not made anymore or just harder to find today. As a result, insurance companies generally charge higher rates to cover older homes. 

Let’s take a look at the difference in home insurance rates in Charleston for $200,000 homes of different age groups:

Average Homeowners Insurance Premiums for a $200,000 House (1-34 Years Old)

Company

Allstate
Foremost
Nationwide
State Farm
Travelers
UPCIC
Average

Frame

$1,703
$4,695
$2,259
$3,009
$1,789
$1,715
$2,229

Masonry

$1,446
$4,013
$2,147
$2,645
$1,594
$1,489
$1,989

Average

$1,575
$4,354
$2,203
$2,827
$1,692
$1,602
$2,109

Average Homeowners Insurance Premiums for a $200,000 House (35+ Years Old)

Company

Allstate
Foremost
Nationwide
State Farm
Travelers
UPCIC
Average

Frame

$2,266
$4,695
$3,117
$3,168
$2,284
$1,953
$2,650

Masonry

$1,906
$4,013
$2,845
$2,789
$2,028
$1,696
$2,342

Average

$2,086
$4,354
$2,981
$2,979
$2,156
$1,824
$2,496

It’s Time to Switch Your Homeowners Insurance

We partner with the nation’s top homeowners insurance companies so you can get a custom policy at an affordable price.

Insurance Companies in Charleston, South Carolina and Their Rates

It’s evident that the age of your home can have a notable influence on homeowners insurance rates. This is common. The premiums from every company for homes of 35 years of age or more are higher in almost every instance when compared with rates from younger homes from the same provider.

The cost to insure younger homes of this value was $354 lower, or about 15% less, than the cost to cover older $200,000 homes. 

You’ll also notice that the construction style of the house affects premiums, as masonry homes cost less to insure than frame homes. Generally, masonry homes, which are houses built out of brick or concrete, have lower insurance premiums because masonry homes can withstand the elements better. They also are much less likely to suffer from termites and wood rot.

Now, let’s take a look at what the age of your house and its construction type means for premiums on $350,000 homes in Charleston:

Average Homeowners Insurance Premiums for a $350,000 House (1-34 Years Old)

Company

Allstate
Foremost
Nationwide
State Farm
Travelers
UPCIC
Average

Frame

$2,714
$9,083
$3,799
$4,218
$2,900
$2,983
$3,638

Masonry

$2,266
$7,759
$3,626
$3,703
$2,586
$2,586
$3,246

Average

$2,490
$8,421
$3,712
$3,961
$2,743
$2,785
$3,442

Average Homeowners Insurance Premiums for a $350,000 House (35+ Years Old)

Company

Allstate
Foremost
Nationwide
State Farm
Travelers
UPCIC
Average

Frame

$3,647
$9,083
$5,024
$4,427
$3,704
$3,399
$4,205

Masonry

$3,024
$7,759
$4,590
$3,891
$3,291
$2,949
$3,737

Average

$3,335
$8,421
$4,807
$4,159
$3,497
$3,174
$3,971

Best Homeowners Insurance in Charleston

Based on the numbers above, Universal Property & Casualty and Travelers are some of the most affordable insurance companies in Charleston. But, the best rates don’t always mean the best provider for you. UPCIC was consistently one of the lowest at every price point.

The best insurance company in Charleston is subjective – it depends on your needs and which carrier offers the right coverage at a price that works. Customer service and claims handling are important, too.

To guarantee you’re getting the best coverage, it’s important to know what insurance policies contain. The best policies don’t skimp in any major areas of coverage. You should always compare quotes from multiple providers to know you’re getting the right deal.

What Does Home Insurance in Charleston Cover? 

Homeowners insurance policies are usually divided into different aspects of coverage. Each area protects your property or financial situation in different ways. A typical home insurance plan in Charleston, known as an HO3 policy, should have the following coverages:

Dwelling: Also known as coverage A, dwelling coverage financially safeguards the main structure of your home. This includes your floor, windows, walls, roof, and patio. The amount of dwelling coverage you have is based on either the replacement cost of your home or the market value of your home.

Other Structures: Also known as coverage B, other structures coverage protects the structures on your property that aren’t attached to your main house. These include sheds, fences, decks, gazebos, and more. Usually, the amount of other structures coverage you have is a percentage of your dwelling coverage.

For instance, if you have $300,000 of dwelling coverage, a normal amount of other structures coverage would be $30,000, or 10% of your dwelling coverage.

Personal Property: Also known as coverage C, personal property coverage is designated for your belongings inside your house. Your furniture, electronics, clothes, valuables, and more are included in personal property coverage. You decide the personal property limit in your policy by deciding how much stuff you have and how much it’s worth. A good way to do this is by performing a home inventory.

For instance, in a simplified example, if you think you have $100,000 worth of belongings, you should choose at least $100,000 of personal property coverage.

Loss of Use: Also sometimes called additional living expenses, loss of use coverage is a part of your plan designed to cover expenses that you can incur if you’re forced to move out of your house due to a covered peril like a fire or a hurricane. Your loss of use coverage enables your provider to reimburse you for things like a hotel stay, food, gas, and more when you have to relocate while your house is being repaired.

Liability: Liability coverage protects your financial well-being in case someone gets injured on your property and decides to sue you for damages. Your insurance can cover the related medical expenses, property damage, and legal fees if you’re found liable. Standard home insurance policies typically come with $100,000 in liability coverage, but many people opt for $500,000 or more.

Medical Payments: Medical payments covers smaller injuries and medical expenses if you’re found liable for someone’s injury on your property. It’s like liability coverage, but specifically designed for more minor injuries.

What Factors Affect Home Insurance Rates in Charleston?

In addition to the replacement cost of your home, the age of your home, and the construction style of your home, insurance companies consider many more factors when determining your insurance premiums. We mentioned that location is important. Your susceptibility to severe weather, the crime rates in your neighborhood, and even the amount of insurance claims in your area are factored in.

Also, personal considerations like your credit score and claims history can have an influence. People with lower credit scores have a spotty record of making timely payments. This worries your insurer, as they might feel that you could miss your premium payments. Thus, you may have to pay higher rates to offset your risk of missing a payment.

Your history of filing insurance claims is taken into account, too. If you’ve filed multiple claims in the recent past, even with a different insurance carrier, you may pay more for coverage since a provider believes that you’re more likely to file again.

Decisions you make about your policy itself also impact your premiums. For example, the amount of coverage you want directly affects how much you’ll pay. Generally, the more insurance you want, the more you’ll pay.

The deductible you choose also plays a role. An easy way to lower your premium is to select a higher deductible. Opting for a higher deductible means the insurance company would have to pay less in case of a claim since you would be taking on more out-of-pocket costs yourself. Unsurprisingly, the insurer likes this, so choosing a higher home insurance deductible often results in a lower rate.

In Charleston specifically, the threat of hurricanes plays a role in determining premiums, too. Insurance agencies have to factor in the possibility that a destructive hurricane can strike your property. Usually, people in areas that suffer hurricanes pay more than people who are never in danger of hurricanes.

How to Get a Home Insurance Quote in Charleston, South Carolina

If you’re looking for a home insurance quote in Charleston, we’re here to help. Clovered is a full-service Charleston independent insurance agency partnering with some of the top providers in the country. We serve 19 states, including South Carolina.

We’d love to help you get a quote. You can get one entirely online. Or, if you want to speak to a licensed agent on the phone, just call 833-255-4117 Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. You can also email us anytime at agent@clovered.com with any questions, and an agent will get back to you soon.

It’s Time to Switch Your Homeowners Insurance

We partner with the nation’s top homeowners insurance companies so you can get a custom policy at an affordable price.

Mobile Home Insurance in Charleston

If you have a mobile home in Charleston, it’s important to note that your premium will differ from the ones we talked about above. We discussed the average rates for HO3 policies, and HO3 policies don’t cover mobile homes.

Providers offer HO7 policies for mobile homes. Although many of the coverage areas are the same on both policies, some of the companies mentioned above may not cover mobile homes. And, the rates will be different. Mobile home policies generally don’t include ordinance and law coverage also.

Flood Insurance in Charleston, South Carolina

In addition to hurricanes and tornadoes, the city of Charleston is no stranger to another form of severe weather that can wreck your property: floods. The city’s location at the intersection of the Atlantic coast and several major tributaries means flooding from storm surges and high tides are likely. On top of that, the area receives a lot of rain and has a history of drainage problems.

Unfortunately, home insurance will do very little to help with damage from flooding. To be properly protected from the many flooding risks in Charleston, you’d need a separate flood insurance policy.

Flood Zones in Charleston

Many city areas are in federally designated flood zones, too, where you may be required to have flood insurance by your mortgage lender. For example, some Charleston and North Charleston properties along the Ashley River and Cooper River are in an AE flood zone. Also, some properties along Noisette Creek in North Charleston are in AE flood zones.

As determined by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), AE flood zones are high-risk zones. FEMA monitors flooding risk for every area of the country and runs the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

To be sure whether your property is in a flood zone, you can look online at FEMA flood maps or reach out to us. We’re happy to help with any questions you may have, and we’d love to pair you with a flood insurance policy that works for you.  We partner with the NFIP and many other flood insurers to offer you public and private flood insurance.

Stay Above Water With Flood Insurance

Do you want to pay for costly and common flood damage yourself or have an insurance policy pick up the tab?

Homeowners
It's Time to Switch Your Homeowners Insurance

We partner with the nation's top homeowners insurance companies so you can get a custom policy at an affordable price.

The editorial content on Clovered’s website is meant to be informational material and should not be considered legal advice.

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