How we find you the best home insurance in Calgary
Unlike auto insurance, home insurance isn’t something that you technically need to have, as it’s not mandatory in Calgary, nor is it required under Canadian law.
But there are many reasons why getting home insurance is a smart move, the most basic of which is that you will receive financial compensation if fire or natural disasters damage your home. The amount you’ve spent on your home is almost certainly much more than you’ll ever spend on a car. So why protect one and not the other?
Because Calgary homeowners are such a diverse group, there’s more than one option when it comes to home insurance, depending on whether you’re a homeowner or a condo dweller. Location is another factor that impacts what kind of home insurance is available to you and what you need from a home insurance policy.
That’s why this page will focus on one city — Calgary — and what home insurance options you should consider if you live there. Every city has its own unique set of perks and challenges and Calgary, with its long, frigid winters and Chinook winds, is no different.
As with anything else you buy, always remember to shop around and compare prices at different companies. You want to get the right home insurance for your needs — but you also want the best price.
How much does home insurance cost in Calgary?
One of the most accurate ways to find out how much home insurance could cost you before locking into a policy is by comparing quotes. The details of your circumstance — your home’s location in Calgary, your risk tolerance, your deductible — play a major part in determining your home insurance rate. Also, insurers underwrite risk differently. Insurers now weigh hundreds of factors to determine your premium, resulting in wide price variations. Rate comparison sites like LowestRates.ca simplify the process for you. We compare the home insurance market in Calgary and show you rates from 10+ insurers.
What risks are specific to Calgary?
- Freezing temperatures. Winter temperatures in Calgary can dip well well below freezing, which can lead to frozen pipes, cracks in the structure of your home, and more.
- Snow. Snow in Calgary can start falling as early as September, and typically does not stop until April or May. Anyone who’s had to shovel snow will know that the white stuff only seems light until you have to lift it, and harder-to-clean places like your roof will likely suffer as it accumulates through the fall, winter, and spring.
- Flooding. Much of Alberta was ravaged by catastrophic floods after an especially heavy rainstorm in 2013, resulting in the displacement of 100,000 people. As the province’s largest city, Calgary was hit especially hard, making it clear that the city is prone to large-scale flooding.
What risks does home insurance cover in Calgary?
A standard home insurance policy will cover the following things: the property itself, your belongings, any upgrades you make to your home, and living expenses if you are forced to temporarily live elsewhere due to damage caused by certain perils (like wildfires). It’ll also cover something that insurance companies call "personal liability" — i.e., the expenses incurred if someone injures themselves on your property.
Depending on where you live and what your building is like, a standard policy may be enough to meet your needs. If you live in Calgary, though, you’ll want to make sure your insurance also covers two things — flood damage and damages from the weight of ice and snow — which may or may not already be built into your policy. Double check with your broker or insurance agent. If these things are not already covered, you may be able to get the coverage as add-ons. And of course, if you think your home is vulnerable to other perils, too, find out if your insurer offers add-ons for those circumstances as well.
Weight of ice, sleet and snow coverage offers financial protection in case your roof is damaged or caves in from ice, sleet or snow accumulation. Meanwhile, flood coverage gives you financial protection if your home is damaged from a flood.
Insurers may offer you different protections based on what kind of policy you get. Always review any policy before you buy it to make sure that it’ll cover your needs.
What risks won’t home insurance cover in Calgary?
In general, home insurance policies won’t cover damage that materialized because you’ve neglected regular maintenance. You won’t be able to use your weight of ice, sleet and snow coverage, for example, if your roof was in bad shape to begin with.
Something else to keep in mind is that different coverages can go by the same name. Flood coverage from one company may offer you protection for a wider range of circumstances than flood coverage from another company. Many insurers, for example, will only cover damages that resulted from freshwater flooding, not saltwater flooding. Talk to your broker or insurance agent, or review your policy, to understand which perils you are definitely covered for.
What kind of home insurance do you need in Calgary?
There are four different types of home insurance available to Calgary homeowners:
Comprehensive - This type of home insurance policy offers the most coverage of all the options. It offers financial protection for your property and belongings in all circumstances, except ones that are specifically excluded (usually predictable events).
Basic - This policy covers common perils, but only ones that are explicitly named in the contract. This includes, but is not limited to: fire, lightning, theft, explosions, and falling objects.
Broad - A policy that falls somewhere between comprehensive and basic insurance in terms of how much coverage it’ll give you. This type of insurance offers comprehensive coverage — meaning coverage that will be available in most circumstances — if certain things, like your property, get damaged. It will offer basic coverage for your home’s contents.
No frills - This policy typically only covers your home in the case of fire and a handful of other perils — making it the most bare-bones policy you can get. People typically get no frills insurance when their homes have structural issues that make them ineligible for even a basic policy. No frills insurance can protect your property and belongings while you are making repairs. You can, and probably should, switch over to another type of policy once your home is up to your insurer’s standards.
When buying a policy, ask your broker or insurance agent about add-ons you can buy to tailor your policy to your unique needs.
What can you do to save on home insurance in Calgary?
There are several ways Calgarians can get discounts on home insurance. You may have come across the term “bundling” while researching your insurance options. It refers to the practice of buying several types of insurance from a single company (e.g., home and auto). When you buy a “bundle” of insurance policies from one insurer, that insurer will likely give you a discount — and help you save cash in the long run.
Again, you should always shop around and compare quotes from multiple companies so that you can make sure you’re getting the best deal available.
What are the best home insurance companies in Calgary?
Everyone has different needs and a different budget, so it’s impossible to say which insurance companies are the “best” for Calgarians. That being said, here’s a list of a few established home insurance companies serving Calgary:
- CAA Insurance
- TD Home Insurance
- RBC Home Insurance
- Intact Insurance