Mobile homes have been growing in popularity over the years as an affordable housing option. The Census Bureau reports that shipments of new mobile or manufactured homes are up in the last five years to 34%, with the average sales price at $81,600. You need to protect your home with insurance, and if your home happens to be on wheels, there are special considerations.
Much like choosing the right mobile home, you want your insurance to fit your needs and lifestyle, but you also want the coverage to fit within your budget. To help you out, we will be sharing some guidelines for choosing mobile home insurance.
What Is Mobile Home Insurance?
Like home insurance, mobile home insurance is financial protection for your residence or mobile home and personal items. It provides coverage for your home, its contents, and other outside structures on the land you own. It also pays for the medical expenses of injured visitors and legal fees if you are sued by an injured guest. Getting the right mobile home insurance coverage at a cost you can afford is essential to protect your property.
While it’s not required by law, mortgage companies and mobile home communities often require that homeowners purchase coverage. The exact coverage that a mobile home insurance policy provides depends on what policy you purchase. The policies vary in price even among the best mobile home insurance companies, so comparing multiple quotes is the best way to find cheap mobile home insurance.
Do You Need Mobile Home Insurance?
Mobile home insurance isn’t required by law, but mortgage companies and mobile home parks may require proof of insurance before working with you. Therefore, anyone who intends to get a mortgage or place their home in a mobile home park needs mobile home insurance.
Considering that a new manufactured home in the US costs an average of $81,600, we recommend purchasing mobile home insurance to protect your home and belongings. While policies can be costly, forgoing coverage means putting yourself at risk of a large financial loss.
How Much Does Mobile Home Insurance Cost?
The cost of manufactured home insurance can vary widely by area. Florida may be the most expensive state due to its extreme weather. The average annual cost of a manufactured home policy in Florida ranges between $860 and $2,400, depending on the county, with most counties averaging $1,000. As for other parts of the country, it is estimated that mobile home insurance policies vary between $300 and $1,000 per year.
What Factors Affect the Cost of Mobile Home Insurance?
Several factors may affect the cost of your manufactured home insurance policy. Some are out of your control, while others can be adjusted. They include the following:
- Age and condition of your home
- Your location – some areas are more prone to theft, fires, flooding, or wind damage that other areas
- Your coverage limits
- The amount of your deductible – higher deductibles may mean a higher upfront cost in case of a loss but are likely to reduce your premium
- Whether you qualify for discounts, such as multiple policies, military service, or having a home security system
- Your claims history
What Does Mobile Home Insurance Cover?
Mobile home insurance includes all of the coverage afforded by a typical homeowners’ insurance policy, including protections for your dwelling and property. Mobile home insurance companies allow policyholders to customize their policies through endorsements, which function as supplements to a standard policy. Endorsements provide coverage that doesn’t come standard with a homeowners’ insurance policy, such as debris removal and water damage from sewers.
Manufactured homes are prone to damage by fire, and some insurance companies exclude fire damage in high-risk areas. Check whether your policy covers this peril. Policyholders can also set unique coverage limits. We provide descriptions of the main coverage options offered by homeowners’ insurance for mobile homes below.
· Dwelling Coverage
This coverage helps pay to rebuild or repair the physical structure of your home if it is damaged by a covered peril. For example, if a fire causes a wall in your mobile home to collapse, the damage would come under dwelling coverage. Other structures covered under dwelling coverage include your roof and a deck attached to your mobile home.
· Personal Property
Mobile home insurance provides protection for your personal belongings, whether they are damaged or stolen. For instance, if a burglar breaks into your mobile home and steals your laptop, you would be covered. Keep in mind that you would have to pay an insurance deductible to make your claim.
· Liability Protection
This coverage protects you when someone is injured on your property. For example, if your neighbor is struck by a falling tree branch on your property, you could be held liable. With this coverage, your insurance company would cover legal defense fees and can pay damages if you’re found to be liable. Your insurance company would only offer financial protection up to your coverage limit.
· Other Structures
Mobile home insurance policies often include coverage for permanent structures that aren’t permanently attached to your home, like a garage or a tool shed.
· Additional Living Expense
If you can’t live in your home due to a covered loss, this coverage provides you with compensation for additional expenses while living elsewhere. For instance, if there’s a fire in your mobile home, your insurance company would pay for the cost of a hotel up to your coverage limit.
How Much Mobile Home Insurance Do I Need?
Having the right amount of coverage is critical. If your home is lost in a fire, being underinsured could make it difficult to afford the replacement of your home. To decide on how much insurance coverage you will need, take the following into account:
- The replacement cost of your manufactured home if you had to buy a new one
- The cost of the improvements you’ve made, such as granite countertops, upgraded kitchen cabinets, or stainless-steel kitchen appliances
- The value of your home’s furniture and electronics, such as televisions and computers
Keep in mind that standard manufactured home policies will pay you the depreciated cost of the items. If you would like to avoid the hassle of having to find second-hand versions of everything you have lost, consider upgrading to a replacement-cost endorsement on your policy that will reimburse you for the price of new and similar items.