Chelsey Tucker graduated with a Bachelor of History degree from Metropolitan State University in 2019. She now writes about insurance with her specialty being life insurance and has been quoted on Help Smart Phone and MEL Magazine.

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years. He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Mar 19, 2020

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How Much Home Insurance?The thing about figuring out how much home insurance you need is that it is never quite as easy as it seems it ought to be.

There are so many classes of homeowners insurance that they can start to blend together (policies are often similarly named: HO-1, HO-2, and so forth).

The first step in deciding how much coverage you need is to understand your options.

To learn how much homeowners insurance you need read on further and then be sure to enter your zip above to compare free insurance quotes!

Types of Home Insurance

The first classification of home insurance, (HO-1) is simple enough. It covers a set list of catastrophes including things like vandalism, smoke, fire and theft. Some even call this rather limited plan the “basic plan.” But what about instances when your roof may cave in from the weight of ice? Or what if your pipes burst in the cold?

Well, you’d need to get another class of home insurance to cover those cases (HO-2), which covers another set list of catastrophic events. The problem with these two types of home insurance is that you are paying for coverage for specific events, and some of those events seem far more unlikely to happen, and are perhaps less expensive to deal with than those that seem more common.

The third type (HO-3) sometimes makes more sense, though it is usually a bit more expensive. This type of home insurance policy covers everything except the things it specifically excludes, such as damage or loss due to nuclear war or earthquakes (which are almost always excluded). Flood insurance is usually excluded too.

Then there is renter’s insurance, for those who are renting their homes, which covers most everything that the first and second classes cover, but only for the items inside the home. It does not cover the structure itself. (If you’re a homeowner renting out property, make sure you have insurance that covers any structural damage.)

HO-6 is the type of home insurance that condo owners will want to buy; it functions similarly as renter’s insurance in that it covers the owner’s personal property, but assumes the building itself has its own separate policy.

And if your home is a remodeled older home, you’ll need yet another kind of insurance because most basic insurance providers do not offer full coverage. This is because they figure the cost of replacing original materials can generally be very expensive.

HO-8 covers the same events as HO-1, and will pay either for repairs, or for the cash value of your home. This policy does not, however, always promise to replace items or materials with those of similar cost or general worth.

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How Much Home Insurance Should You Get?

Now that you’ve got an idea of what kind of home insurance options you have, and have an idea about what you’ll need, how much home insurance will you want to buy?

The basic question being asked here is rather simple: how much of your home do you want replaced should it be completely demolished? The short answer to this question is probably that you’ll want 100% of your home replaced.

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So, How Much Does This Cost?

Several things determine this number, but it does depend in part on how you’d like to be reimbursed should damage incur. One policy will pay cash value—how much your home and belongings were worth at the time of the event, including depreciation—or you can get replacement insurance, which covers rebuilding your home with materials of similar quality.

Experts in policies will be able to come up with specific numbers for you, each calculated by particular cases, but if you want to get a ballpark idea of rebuilding, a good way to get this is to times the square footage of your home by your local product and construction costs.

You will also need to decide how much your belongings are worth. When you get insurance for belongs, make sure that you are getting coverage that replaces the item rather than just pays what the item was worth at the time of the loss (replacement value versus cash value. Here is why. Your 2-year old computer might be worth a few hundred dollars, but will cost $1,000+ to replace.

Most plans include automatic coverage of a percentage (usually somewhere between 50% and 75%) of whatever your home’s structure is insured for. You will have to do an item-by-item inventory, estimating the worth and replacement costs of the contents of your home, to determine if you’ll want or need to purchase additional coverage.

It is very important that you do this inventory because you’ll have to prove ownership if you ever need to file a claim. Taking pictures of items, such as antiques or jewelry, also can’t hurt, though there may be a limit to personal items.

There are ways to reduce your premiums, such as installing various safety alarms or using the same insurance provider for multiple types of insurance. Figuring out how much home insurance you need can be a long process, and can sometimes seem tedious, but your home is one of your most important investments. Use our free home insurance quote tool now to rate quote on suitable policies.