California Homeowners Insurance

Personal Lines Insurance

Each home is unique, so is the coverage that you will need for it. Whether you own or rent your home, you will want to make sure that the inside and the outside are covered in case you ever need it. The most common types of homeowner policies are:

  • HO-1: Basic coverage: a homeowners insurance policy that insures home owner's against property damage that are a result of specific conditions. These include common conditions such as fire, smoke, vandalism, windstorm and theft/burglary . An HO-1 policy also typically provides personal liability and medical payments coverage.
  • HO-2: Broad coverage: this home insurance policy insures the policyholder's dwelling, structures connected to the insured dwelling, and personal belongings stored on and off the property. HO-2 policies also provide reimbursement for loss of use, meaning the policy covers living expenses while the home is repaired. The list of damages covered by an HO-2 policy is more extensive than that of an HO-1 policy.
  • HO-3: Special form: the most common type of home insurance coverage, HO-3 policies protect the dwelling, related structures, personal property, and loss of use. Liability coverage and medical payments coverage are also included with this coverage. This coverage protects homeowners from a long list of damages including fire, explosions, hail, lightening, tornadoes, wind storms, theft and vandalism.
  • HO-4: Renter's policy: also known as renters insurance coverage, an HO-4 policy protects tenants from direct damage to personal belongings. Personal liability and medical payments coverage are also included with renters insurance coverage options.
  • HO-6: Condominium policy: this policy is intended to coordinate with the policy purchased by the condo association that covers the physical structure and common areas of the community. An HO-6 policy insures condo owners for direct damage to their personal property on a named-perils basis. HO-6 is similar to HO-4 coverage, besides covering personal property, this insurance also covers improvements you have made to the dwelling.A condo insurance policy also provides personal liability and medical payments protection.
  • HO-8: Older home: HO-8, or modified home insurance coverage, offers traditional coverage for damage to property in addition to personal liability and medical payments coverage. This type of homeowners insurance coverage is similar to HO-1, but it allows the insured to change the replacement cost provision to a repair-cost basis. In some cases, the replacement cost option can also be converted to an actual cash value basis. HO-8 home insurance is ideal for older homes or homes that would not be replaced if they were destroyed.

All homeowner policies are "packaged" policies. You get a group of coverage's packaged into your policy for one overall premium. They include coverage on your building, your contents (furniture, clothing, etc.) and liability insurance in case you are sued, all under the same policy.

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A typical policy consists of three things:
  • The Declarations Page - that declares who, what and how much you are insuring, along with the date your coverage starts and the premium.
  • The Policy Booklet - printed pages that contain the details of coverages and exclusions.
  • Endorsements - separate pages, usually with endorsement numbers, that change (or endorse) specific parts of the policy.