We have seen several earthquakes recently in Missouri, Oklahoma, and Arkansas. They seem to be becoming more and more common in the southern midwest states. Would you be surprised to know that most people in Missouri don’t have earthquake insurance on their homeowner insurance policy?
Even though earthquake insurance in the St. Louis area is affordable, most people decide against the coverage because they think it isn’t necessary. History tells us that St. Louis earthquake insurance is important.
St. Louis Earthquake Insurance
Statistics tell us that earthquakes really aren’t very common in Missouri or the St. Louis area. However, the risk of an earthquake happening in or around St. Louis is very real. Our area sits directly on fault lines, mainly the New Madrid Seismic Zone, (or Madrid fault), the most active seismic zone east of the Rocky Mountains. Did you know that there were over 21,000 quakes that registered a 3.5 or greater magnitude in the United States between 1974 and 2003?
What Is Holding People Back From Purchasing Earthquake Insurance
Since we offer earthquake insurance, what is holding people back from buying it?
- There is a common misconception that your homeowner policies will cover an earthquake when in fact the typical policy doesn’t cover earthquakes. A lot of people also simply think the coverage isn’t valuable. If you know the risk you face living in the St. Louis area, it is easier to consider earthquake insurance when you are shopping.
- Most homeowners simply do not understand the risk of earthquakes here in St. Louis or Missouri in general. It’s been a long time, but in the 1800s, we were shaken by several quakes that absolutely devastated the area.
Your Most Valuable Assets Are Protected With Earthquake Insurance After A Seismic Event
If there is an earthquake, you will have three components to your earthquake insurance that are activated with a claim.
- Dwelling coverage to rebuild your home.
- You will be reimbursed for the loss of personal belongings.
- Additional living expenses if you have to live somewhere else.
If there is any fire or water damage that results from an earthquake that is covered by your homeowner policy. If there is a flood caused by an earthquake, that would require flood insurance to be covered.
It’s always good to ask what all is covered with every insurance policy as some earthquake policies will cover vehicles, landscaping, and even swimming pools, but others don’t.
If there are several earthquakes in a 72 hour or 3 day period they are considered as one earthquake and covered under the same claim. Of course, this provides protection in case there are aftershocks that can also cause major earthquake damage.
How Do You Purchase An Earthquake Insurance Policy
An earthquake can happen in a blink of an eye and in 30 seconds you can lose a great deal of what has taken you years to build. Here are some things that are important to remember when purchasing earthquake insurance:
- First, ask your independent insurance agent if earthquake coverage is already included in your homeowner’s policy. Again, normally most policies do not include earthquake coverage, some will allow you to include it as additional coverage.
- Earthquake coverage is often subjected to a higher deductible. Your insurance deductible will usually range from 15% to 25% of the dwelling replacement value. This is much higher than your deductible when compared to your all peril deductible. For example, a home insured for $300,000 with a 15% earthquake deductible will have a $45,000 deductible.
- Some companies will exclude brick or stone exteriors when it comes to earthquake coverage. We don’t allow that here at IASTL, but be sure to bring it up with your insurance agent in case it slips by. Make sure that your brick or stone exterior is covered in your policy.
- Earthquake doesn’t only apply to homeowners insurance. It can usually be included in business and renter’s insurance policies as well.
- Some companies simply don’t offer earthquake coverage. That’s why we are proud to be independent insurance agents that can check with many different companies to find you the best policy and price.
- Insurance Advisors of St Louis have found an insurance carrier that will sell a stand-alone policy. We can usually get you a much lower deductible (5% to 10%) at little or no additional cost.
Contact Insurance Advisors Of St. Louis today for more information on earthquake insurance or any other insurance coverage that we cover. We will help to ensure your valuables are covered. If you are more comfortable speaking in person you can call us at (314) 842-0960 or stop by and see us at 8500 Watson Road, Suite 190, St. Louis MO 63119.