The definition of a mobile home may vary between insurance companies. Although RVs and travel trailers are considered mobile homes, for insurance purposes, the term generally refers to trailers or manufactured homes that are built offsite and transported to a mobile home park or lot. For the purposes of mobile home insurance, the definition is usually a detached single family residence which is temporarily or permanently fixed to a lot.
Mobile home insurance offers coverage similar to the protection afforded by homeowners insurance. It is usually available as a named perils policy or an all risk policy. Named perils policies only cover damages arising from risks named in the policy like fire, wind, hail, lightening and theft, while all risk policies cover damage from any cause not specifically excluded in the policy. Common exclusions in mobile home policies include acts of war, civil insurrection, nuclear accident, earthquakes, volcanoes and floods.
Property Damage Coverage
The property damage portion of the policy covers damage to the structure and personal property of the owner. Personal property may be covered even if it is not in the structure when the loss occurs. A laptop computer that is stolen while being transported to another location would usually be covered by mobile home insurance. There are limits on coverage for jewelry, silverware and other valuable items, but policyholders can get coverage through these items by scheduling them on the policy and paying an additional premium.
Liability and Medical Payments Coverage
Like standard homeowners coverage, mobile home policies provide medical payments and liability coverage to protect the homeowner if someone is injured on their property. If the home is on a lot that is leased or rented, liability coverage may not extend to injuries that arise outside the mobile home itself. Medical payments coverage limits are usually $3,000 and pay medical bills for non-residents who are injured on the property. Liability coverage is usually at least $100,000 and protects the owner from civil lawsuits or litigation stemming from injuries on the premises.
Additional Living Expenses
Mobile home insurance has a provision for additional living expenses if the insured property is rendered uninhabitable due to damage from a covered risk. This means that the home insurance company will reimburse the property owner for expenses like lodging and food that would not be incurred if the owner was living in his or her home. Additional living expenses coverage usually has daily monetary limits and may only cover expenses for a specific period of time, so it is wise to check the policy to determine the amount of available coverage.
Emergency Removal Coverage
Some mobile home policies have a provision that allows owners to move their homes in emergencies. This means that if a wild fire or hurricane was approaching, the cost to move the mobile home out of the area to a safe location would be reimbursed by the policy. As with other provisions, the danger to the home must be from a covered risk itemized in your contract. This coverage would not apply if the home was moved to avoid rising flood waters since floods are not usually covered and flood insurance is a separate type of insurance purchased through the federal government’s “National Flood Insurance Program”.
Not all mobile home policies protect against damage to detached structures on the property, like garages and garden sheds. Although this protection is included on the standard homeowner’s policy, some companies include the coverage while others require that homeowners buy a rider at an additional cost. While mobile homes that are parked on leased lots do not usually have detached structures, homeowners that own their lot and have, or intend to add a garage or other structure, should check their contract.
Replacement Cost and Actual Cash Value Policies
At one time, it was impossible to purchase replacement cost insurance, but these policies are now offered by some insurance companies. Replacement cost insurance pays for damages at actual cost and will pay for replacement of a mobile home that is destroyed. Actual cash value insurance pays for damages at a depreciated rate based on the age and condition of the damaged area of the home. If a roof is 15 years old with a 20 year lifespan and it is damaged by a covered risk, the insurer would only pay 25% of the repair costs for 5 years out of the 20 that the roof was still useable.
Purchase Price Insurance
The least expensive type of mobile home insurance is purchase price coverage which shields against damage to the property up to the amount of the original purchase price. If a manufactured home is purchased for $100,000, the maximum this type of mobile home insurance will pay for damages is $100,000 even if it would cost $150,000 to replace the manufactured home. Repairs are paid at a depreciated, pro-rated amount based on the age and condition of the property and its components.
Mobile home insurance policies do not have standard forms like auto, health, or life policies and there can be significant differences in the policies offered by home insurance companies. While price is always a consideration, it is important to compare the provisions of the different contracts to find the best possible protection for your mobile home. Any home is an investment in the future and it is essential that property owners get the best possible financial protection so that if a catastrophe occurs, they will be able to replace their home.
Find The Best Home Insurance Quotes
The easiest way to compare the rates of different mobile home insurance policies is to get free rate quotes online from multiple insurance companies. Comparing the quotes of several insurers at once saves time and effort. Consumers simply complete a short questionnaire with basic information about their property and the type of insurance they want, and they will receive multiple rate quotes instantly. Comparing insurance quotes online for any type of coverage is a great way to save money on a long term purchase like mobile home insurance.
When investing in a manufactured or mobile home, it is important to take the time to compare the different mobile home insurance policies, coverage options, rates, and terms and conditions to find the best coverage at the cheapest price. A home is more than a structure and property owners should protect their investment and prevent financial loss.