Is Earthquake insurance necessary? - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Is Earthquake insurance necessary?


This latest quake may have you wondering if it's a good idea to buy earthquake insurance.  It is not standard in homeowner's policies right now. Your home is one of your biggest investments, but most people living around here don't think about earthquake insurance. 

But with these recent quakes, even the Virginia Department of Emergency Management is recommending homeowners take it seriously.

 Video showing the earthquake is a reminder of the damage the shaking can cause.  The earthquake Wednesday night in the Amelia area is another warning that we live on a seismic fault.

But do you have the right insurance to protect you?

Crystal Messer has earthquake coverage.  She lives in Amelia and even felt the quake last night.

"These days you don't know what's going to happen Mother Nature is taking its course," she said.

"Earthquakes of any size are a great reminder to Virginians that we have got faults here in the Commonwealth," says Laura Southard with the Virginia Department of Emergency Management.  "And people have to know that!

VDEM says homeowners should talk to their insurance provider about earthquake coverage.   "A slight crack in a building might have looked minor but it could be very major," says Southard.

Event if your foundation survives an earthquake, other parts of your property could still be damaged including your driveway, your pool or other structures on your property.  Damage like this could cost more than $50,000 according to insurance agents.

Insurance companies say while coverage can be affordable, what deters people is the deductible.
Many times that is 10-percent of your home's value. So if your house is worth $200,000, you would be responsible for $20,000 of the claim.

In the end experts say, the choice is yours.

Insurance usually covers things like: foundation cracks, walls and floors that have shifted and damages to chimneys due to earthquakes.  If you decide to get the coverage how much you pay yearly will depend on the value and construction of your home.

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