Choosing The Right Motorcycle Insurance

What You Should Know About Insuring Your Manufactured Home

by Joel Wheeler

Insurance for a manufactured home generally works the same as home insurance for a stick-built home. The risks you will be insuring against include damage to your home's structure and its contents, theft of personal property, and liability for injuries to others while on your property. However, since the premium rates for homeowner's insurance are based on the property's exposure to risk, there are some differences of which you need to be aware.

Risk Assessment

Fire and Wind

Insurance companies tend to assign greater risk to manufactured homes. Even though a manufactured home doesn't necessarily have a higher risk of catching on fire than a site-built home, fire often spreads more quickly in a factory-built home causing greater damage. Also, manufactured homes are lighter and can blow over more easily from high winds, resulting in costly insurance claims.

Frozen Pipes

Freezing pipes often are another issue. Water damage caused by frozen pipes that burst can be extensive and costly. Unfortunately, cold air can reach water pipes running underneath a manufactured home more easily, especially if the pipes aren't well insulated. Manufactured homes, in general, tend not to be as well insulated overall as site-built homes. Weatherproofing the home and installing additional insulation or insulated skirting help prevent pipes from freezing.

Age and Type

Although terms, deductibles, and coverage limits vary among insurers and the type of policy you choose, the age and type of your manufactured home can affect the insurance rate you pay. As an example, a double-wide manufactured home may cost less to insure than a single-wide mobile home built before June 1976. Up until that time, mobile homes weren't required to follow federal standards for design, construction, energy efficiency, and fire resistance. Consequently, insurance companies consider older mobile homes a greater risk.

Reduced Insurance Premiums

When insuring a manufactured home, you may be able to save money on the premium rate you pay by securing your home to the ground with tie-downs and ground anchors. These help prevent your home from being blown over during hurricanes, tornadoes, or other turbulent windstorms.

How many tie-downs you need depends on the length and width of your manufactured home. The type of tie-down or anchor is based on the manufacturer's recommendations and when the home was built. Anchor type also depends on the kind of soil on which the home is situated and the wind conditions in the area.

Other ways to lower the insurance premium you pay:

  1. Take steps to reduce the risk of damage from fire and water. If you live in an older manufactured home, you may get a lower insurance rate by updating the home's electrical, plumbing, and heating systems.

  2. Increase the deductible to more than $500 as long as you can afford to pay it if you have to file a claim. While higher deductibles decrease insurance rates, if you live in an area at high risk for certain types of natural disasters, your insurance company may require you to pay separate deductibles for different kinds of damage.

  3. Make your manufactured home more resistant to natural disasters that can cause massive damage. Storm shutters and replacing the roof with stronger roofing materials designed to withstand high winds help make your home more weather resistant. The cost of these materials is more, but they can save you money if disaster strikes by preventing your property from being damaged or destroyed.

For more information on insuring your manufactured home, contact an insurance agent from a firm like John C. Beckett & Associates Inc.