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How we find you the best home insurance in Victoria.

Own a home in Victoria? You need to insure it.

While you’re not legally required to purchase home insurance, mortgage applications often hinge on it — financial institutions won’t lend to you otherwise.

And even if you own your home outright, it’s still a good idea to buy insurance. It could protect you from potentially incurring massive debt.

But finding the right home insurance plan can be tricky. To get the best policy, you’ll need to ask your agent or broker a lot of questions.

We’ve assembled the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about buying home insurance in Victoria: from the cost of insurance to the types of protection available.

And we’ll help you find savings, too, with tips on lowering your premiums and — most important of all — comparing insurers.

Your home insurance questions, answered.

How much does home insurance cost in Victoria?

The final cost of your premium depends on a lot of things, like the age, size, condition, and location of your home.

When you apply for a policy, an insurer will ask for all these details.

One way to get a quick estimate is to request a quote. LowestRates.ca provides quotes from over ten Canadian insurers.

If you apply for a quote on our site, you'll see some variation in price. This is because insurance companies underwrite risk differently. Some feel that they can take on more risk, while others are trying to minimize their exposure.

What matters is to get multiple quotes, because that way you’ll be able to compare prices and policies to find the deal that’s right for you.

What risks are specific to Victoria?

Some of the most important risks that insurance covers are related to weather. In recent years, for example, water damage from rain and snow has overtaken fire in Canada as the largest category for claims.

Overall, Victoria’s climate is quite mild. The average annual precipitation is 28 inches, which is less than half the figure for Vancouver, and temperatures tend to be springlike, which reduces the risk of forest fires. Both factors help to lower home insurance costs.

On the other hand, Victoria, like everywhere else, is subject to the effects of climate change. Fewer trees (which help divert water from storm systems), rising sea levels and more intense storms will all serve to drive up premiums up over time. Victoria is also situated in a very significant earthquake zone. You should be aware that earthquake protection is not included in regular insurance policies — it has to be purchased in addition to your base policy. Optional coverage is called an 'insurance rider.'

What risks does home insurance cover in Victoria?

While home insurance is tailored to each policyholder’s requirements and exposure to risk, insurance generally provides coverage for such things as:

  • Damage to your home and its contents caused by water, wind or fire.
  • Theft of personal possessions—including from your vehicle.
  • Injury to a person visiting you at home.
  • Damage to other people’s homes (such as smoke damage from a fire on your property).

What risks won’t home insurance cover in Victoria?

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that home insurance covers you for everything. Policies typically don’t include damage from things like:

  • Floods, earthquakes and other catastrophic events.
  • Failure to maintain your property, such as not fixing your roof.
  • Damage caused by rodents and other pests. 

What kind of home insurance do you need in Victoria?

There are four main types of insurance you can get when buying a home:

Comprehensive - This type of coverage is, as its name suggests, quite extensive. It will cover the structure of your home against all insurable perils, as well as your contents. However, you won’t have coverage against perils that insurance companies normally exclude, like earthquakes and overland flooding.

Basic or Named Perils - With basic or named perils insurance, you choose which perils you want coverage from. You don’t have coverage for anything beyond what you ask for. As such, it provides narrower coverage than the comprehensive option.

Broad - Like a comprehensive policy, this type of insurance covers your home’s structure against every kind of insurable loss. However, your contents are only covered against perils that you specify (like in a named perils policy).

No-Frills - There may be times when you can’t get insurance on a property — for example, if it’s so rickety that it might fall down. In that case, you may be able to get no-frills insurance for a few very basic risks, like fire damage, until the building is habitable. If you’re planning to remodel a house, it’s likely that a no-frills policy will be sufficient.

Finally, you can buy extra coverage to protect yourself from risks that your base policy excludes. These extra coverages are known as endorsements. They’re good for rare and unforeseeable events, such as sewer backups, overland flooding and theft. Victoria residents might want to include an endorsement that covers earthquakes, given the city’s location.

What can you do to save on home insurance in Victoria?

We all want to save money on home insurance. Here are some of the easiest ways to do so:

  • Get a discount by buying your home and auto insurance from the same provider.
  • Raise your deductible — that lowers the insurer’s risk, and your premiums.
  • Avoid claiming for small amounts, since the resulting increase in premiums will often cost you more than the amount you received.
  • Buy your policy online direct writer: that may get you a discount because it’s cheaper for insurance companies to sell that way.
  • Find the best price by using a website that compares insurance rates.

What are the best insurance companies in Victoria?

No insurance company is the ‘best’ for everybody. Every insurance company prices risk a little differently.

One of the most efficient ways to quickly gauge whether an insurance company favours you is to apply for a quote. Applying for a quote does not obligate you to buy an insurance policy.

LowestRates.ca shows you quotes from multiple insurance companies. The lowest rate you receive indicates which insurer might be the best fit for you — a low rate shows that the company wants your business.

Having a list of quotes from a range of insurers is a good starting point from which you can do more research.  

At the same time, when it comes to insurance, cheaper isn’t always best. In fact, a bare-bones policy can cost you more in the long run. Always ask your insurance company about what perils are not included in your coverage before you lock into a policy.

You need to be able to afford your premiums, but you also need an adequate amount of coverage.

It also doesn’t hurt to ask your friends and family about their experience with their insurer, but keep in mind that your experience will be different. They may have received a great rate, but you’re not guaranteed the same premium.

Thankfully, you have a lot of choice in Victoria, since there are many good insurers serving homeowners throughout British Columbia. This is just a few of them:

  • Desjardins Insurance
  • Aviva Canada
  • TD Insurance
  • Economical Insurance
  • Intact Insurance

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