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The Land of Lincoln is home to the Windy City, three presidents, and the Chicago Bulls, just to name a few. But The Prairie State also presents some serious homeowners insurance risks.
The average home insurance premium in Illinois is less expensive than the national average. According to the most recent available data from the Insurance Information Institute, in 2014, the average cost of homeowners insurance in the state of Illinois was $987, slightly lower than the national average of $1,132. There are 22 states with lower average home insurance rates than Illinois.
|Illinois Annual Average||$881||$938||$987|
|Illinois Price Per Month||$73||$78||$82|
|US Annual Average||$1,034||$1,096||$1,132|
|US Cost Per Month||$86||$91||$94|
Choosing a homeowners insurance company in Illinois should be easier. Actually, it’s already easy; you could just go with whichever company your mortgage lender recommends, but you probably won’t get the best rates that way. The key to finding the best homeowners rates is to compare homeowners insurance in Illinois from multiple companies.
Last year, these were the 10 most common home insurance companies reported by QuoteWizard users living in the state of Illinois. Out of the 33,678 Illinois homeowners that used QuoteWizard to request insurance quotes last year, 954 had no home insurance.
Why contact every individual company in Illinois that you want a homeowners quote from when you can just answer a few questions about your home and desired coverage, and get competing quotes from agents? Save time and money with QuoteWizard.
|Rank||Company||Direct Premiums Written||Market Share|
|1||Country Mutual Insurance Co.||$244,142||8.6%|
|2||Allstate Indemnity Co.||$201,686||7.1%|
|3||American Family Mutual Insurance Co.||$140,042||5.0%|
|4||Allstate Insurance Co.||$126,266||4.5%|
|5||Farmers Insurance Group of Cos.||$85,452||3.0%|
|6||Travelers Home & Marine Insurance Co.||$64,616||2.3%|
|7||Allstate Property & Casualty Co.||$60,969||2.2%|
|8||Illinois Farmers Insurance Co.||$60,897||2.2%|
|9||Metropolitan Casualty Insurance Co.||$44,138||1.6%|
Source: A.M. Best (Ratings as of 9/10/2015)
|Rank||Company||Direct Premiums Written (in thousands)||Market Share|
|2||Country Insurance & Financial Service Co.||$1,124,842||5.1%|
|3||Travelers Companies Inc.||$961,411||4.3%|
|4||American International Group||$957,032||4.3%|
|6||Farmers Insurance Group of Cos.||$606,924||2.7%|
|7||CNA Insurance Group||$562,006||2.5%|
|8||Zurich Insurance Group||$553,611||2.5%|
|9||American Family Insurance Group||$513,729||2.3%|
|*Represents both home and auto insurance|
Many different factors come into play when insurance companies calculate the cost of homeowners insurance. Some, like the age of your home, are within your control. Others, like crime rates or natural disasters, are beyond your control. Here are some of the factors that affect the cost of homeowners insurance in Illinois.
Home prices can greatly affect the cost of insurance in any given state. A higher average home price generally means higher premiums in that state. For Illinois, the average listing price is $267,661 as of July 2015, which is slightly lower than the national average of $284,748.
Burglary is a serious and sometimes violent property crime. States with higher average burglary rates generally have higher average home insurance premiums, because the likelihood that someone will need to file a claim is higher. According to data from the FBI Uniform Crime Report, in 2013, Illinois’ average burglary rate was 452.1 per 100,000 people, which is notably lower than the national average of 610.0 per 100,000.
States with more law enforcement per capita tend to be safer than states with fewer policemen and women. In Illinois, there are 27.6 law enforcement personnel per 100,000 total citizens, which is slightly lower than the national median of 32 per 100,000.
The humid climate in Illinois is typical of the Midwest, with four distinct seasons, cold winters and hot, humid summers. With the addition of thunderstorms and tornadoes, Illinois’ climate can be a hazard to homeowners.
Cold, snowy winters: Cold winters are an annual event in Illinois, where daytime temperatures stay below freezing for much of the winter, and average snowfall exceeds 25 inches per year in some parts. It is not uncommon for winters to be more extreme in northern Illinois than in southern Illinois. Snow is also much heavier in northern Illinois, due to its latitude and also the presence of Lake Michigan, which increases snowfall, especially in the Chicago area. Large disparities in snowfall do exist; for example, Chicago, in the northeast, averages about 37 inches of snow per year, while Cairo, to the south, averages only 4.4 inches.
Chicago is so snowy, in fact, that it was ranked the #12 snowiest major US city. When snow falls and temperatures drop, people crank the furnace, causing a spike in energy costs and trapping in moisture that may lead to mold development. In extremely cold temperatures, pipes can crack or leak. Feel free to discuss these concerns with your insurance agent.
Hot, humid summers: Summers in Illinois are traditionally hot, with averages over 80 degrees in most areas. The same humid air that produces heavy snowfall in the winter also makes it quite humid during the summer. July is the hottest month on average. Chicago sees an average high of 84 degrees in July, and further south, Alton averages 89 degrees in this month. Humidity levels peak in August, though Illinois has relatively high humidity all year long. With 80% humidity on average in the summer months, the heat feels a lot hotter. As air conditioning is used more, energy bills soar, and power outages can occur. While extreme heat waves are not very common, they do occur every few years, so it’s important to prepare accordingly. Summer humidity often gives way to thunderstorms, which form easily in these conditions.
Thunderstorms: Illinois averages about 40 inches of rain per year, and over 100 days of rain annually. Of this, Illinois experiences about 50 days with thunderstorm activity, on average, contributing greatly to the annual total. The mostly flat terrain allows these destructive storms to spread quickly. Thunderstorms bring heavy rains with strong winds, thunder and lightning, and can cause hail, wildfires, and tornadoes. Floods can also occur, especially during spring months when winter snow melts. Flooding is the most damaging weather hazard in Illinois. While standard insurance will protect against damage from thunderstorms, the only way to obtain flood insurance is through the National Flood Insurance Program. Learn more about the NFIP here.
Tornadoes: Tornadoes are the most violent kind of storm, involving heavy winds that inflict considerable damage to property. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Illinois averages 27 tornadoes per year. And, in 2012, the National Weather Service ranked Illinois the #12 most tornado-prone state. Tornado season peaks between April and June. Extreme tornadoes can destroy buildings and flip over cars, and Illinois is no stranger to extreme tornadoes. The deadliest tornado in US history, the Tri-State Tornado of 1925, occurred in Illinois and killed 695 people in three states.
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