For Consumers

How do insurance companies set homeowner premiums?

Insurance companies consider many factors when setting homeowner rates. Understanding how this affects your premiums — as well as shopping around — can save you money.

Learn how auto and homeowner rates are approved in Washington. 

Factors that could influence your rates include:


Rates vary based upon where your house is located. Crime, wind damage and other risks vary by geographic area.

Construction type

Rates vary based on the type of construction. For example, a wood-frame home is typically more expensive to insure than a brick home.

Amount of insurance

Your premium will vary depending on the replacement cost of your home. The cost to actually rebuild your home may exceed its current market or sales price.

Talk to your agent or company to see if you have the right amount of coverage.

Claims history

Some companies may charge you more based on the number or types of claims you file. They may even cancel your coverage due to one or more claims.

Ask your agent or your company how they treat claim history.

Why homeowner premiums are going up

Insurance premiums go up when the costs involved in repairing or replacing your home go up. Repairs are more expensive and take longer and claims are taking longer to process. It all adds up to more expenses for insurance companies, which ultimately get passed on to policyholders through rate increases.

Inflation trends also affect premiums. 

How to save money on your insurance premiums

Did your insurance company raise your premiums? Here are some tips for saving money.

Remember, if your insurance premiums change, your insurance company has to tell you why