is homeowners insurance required?

While auto insurance is required by law in most states, home insurance may not be legally mandatory. But depending on other circumstances, you still might need it and, more important, likely always want it.

As opposed to owning a car, most states don't require you to have homeowners insurance if you legally own a home. But if you're among the 70 percent of Americans who finance their homes with a mortgage, your lender probably requires you to have at least some basic homeowners coverage. So, even though there are no state laws requiring home insurance, it's still necessary for most homeowners.

"Why?" you may ask. Well until you've paid off your home loan, your mortgage company is basically part owner of the house. So, naturally, they have a vested interest in keeping it in good condition and avoiding a dip in value.

And that's precisely what homeowners insurance helps achieve. If unforeseen disasters such as tornadoes, explosions, or fires cause damage, your home policy helps cover vital repairs to keep your place in tip-top form.

Keep in mind, if you have an escrow account with your mortgage lender, you can also use that same account to pay your homeowners insurance premium. Depending on your financial preferences, this can make for one less thing on your plate and contribute to stress-free policy management.

4 more reasons you might need homeowners insurance

Even if you don't have a mortgage, you could find yourself in situations when homeowners insurance is important.

1. If you can't rebuild your home out of pocket

For most homeowners, your abode is your largest investment, worth way more than you have in savings. This means, unfortunately, that if your home were ever completely leveled by a covered risk, you probably couldn't afford to rebuild it on your own dime.

With home insurance, however, you could save thousands (even millions) in out-of-pocket expenses and rest easy knowing you're not alone in case the worst happens.

2. If you have important valuables that need protecting

From family heirlooms to cutting-edge electronics to expensive jewelry, your home is chock-full of valuable items you'd be devastated to lose.

To make sure that you can repair or replace your stuff in case of burglary or other covered risks (without depleting your own hard-earned savings), you need homeowners insurance you can rely on.

3. If you're worried about potential lawsuits

There's always the risk that a visitor could get hurt while on your property or inside your house — especially if you have attractive nuisances like swimming pools or trampolines. Don't let potential mishaps like these (and the havoc they can wreak on your wallet) keep you up at night.

By adding homeowners insurance, you can get assistance with legal fees if an injured visitor sues, plus medical coverage for their injuries.

4. If you consider peace of mind a priority

Think about the weight that's lifted off your shoulders by having help facing the unknown. A freak storm or shocking burglary could put your finances and family's future in jeopardy.

But with coverage for your dwelling, valuables, and liability, you can react confidently to the unexpected — even if you can't predict it.

find the coverage you need (and want)

Just because you need homeowners insurance in many situations doesn't mean you have to settle for one-size-fits-all coverage. In fact, with Esurance there's no such thing.

We make it easy for you to tailor coverage options and you could even score a variety of handy, personalized discounts to make your homeowners insurance even more satisfying. Speak with one of our licensed agents or start your free online quote today.

5 surprising uses for homeowners insurance
Bet you didn't know your home policy could do all this.

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