Mortgage lenders require homeowners insurance, but purchasing a policy is a good idea even if you own your home outright. Insurance provides financial protection against a range of perils, including legal liability for accidents on your property and catastrophic damage from fires or other disasters.
Military members and veterans should carefully consider their policies as their personal and professional situations change. Even if you have homeowners insurance, periodically re-evaluating your choices can help you get the best rates, services and policies for your situation.
Keep reading to find out what you need to know to find the best homeowners insurance policy.
Table of Contents
- Military Deployment and Homeowners Insurance
- The Best Military-Specific Home Insurance Companies
- The Best Home Insurance Companies With Military Discounts
- Farmers Homeowners Insurance – Best for Loyalty and No-Claims Rewards
- Liberty Mutual Homeowners Insurance – Best for Custom Policies
- Kemper Personal Insurance Homeowners Coverage – Best for Simplicity
- GEICO Homeowners Insurance – Best Large Insurance Broker
- Lemonade – Best for Socially Conscious Customers
- Online Insurance Marketplaces
- More Ways for Military Families to Save on Home Insurance
- Military Homeowners Insurance FAQs
- How Much Does Home Insurance for Military Members Cost?
- Who Has the Best Insurance Rates for Military?
- Who Is Eligible for Military-Specific Homeowners Insurance and Discounts?
Military Deployment and Homeowners Insurance
Military members should examine every homeowners insurance policy for two important clauses:
- Occupancy clauses: Insurance companies whose policies carry occupancy clauses may not pay claims if your home has been vacant for a significant period – such as a deployment. To keep you covered, insurance providers may ask you to buy an expensive “fire policy.”
- War zone exemptions on personal property coverage: Homeowners insurance policies can cover your possessions, wherever they are in the world – except for war zones. If your policy contains a war zone clause, it may not cover lost or damaged items like laptops, jewelry or cameras while you’re deployed.
Some providers, including military homeowners insurance companies, may waive these clauses for military members, especially when deployed on active duty. Ask about your provider’s military clause before you purchase a policy.
The Best Military-Specific Home Insurance Companies
Insurance companies specifically serving military and veteran customers may offer unique coverage options during deployment and other situations.
Here are some of the best military insurance providers in the market today.
USAA Home Insurance
USAA provides an array of financial products, including home insurance for military members and qualified family members. Founded in 1922 by 25 Army officers who pooled their money to insure each other’s cars, USAA now has 12 million members and $31 billion in assets, according to its website.
USAA homeowners insurance covers all kinds of catastrophes, including:
- Weather-related events (see exceptions below)
- Identity theft damages (unless you live in North Carolina)
USAA specifically covers military uniforms under your homeowners insurance policy – with no deductible.
Additional Options for USAA
If you live in a designated flood zone or an area prone to earthquakes (like Oregon or Washington), you may have to purchase additional “gap” insurance to cover these and other hazards. Review your insurance policy to determine what USAA may or may not cover.
You can also ask a USAA agent about other gap insurance policies that may apply to your area.
Is USAA Homeowners Insurance Only for Military?
USAA homeowners insurance is available in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
The company offers some of the best homeowners insurance options for military families, but not everyone qualifies for USAA insurance.
Who Can Get USAA Homeowners Insurance?
Military members, veterans and their eligible family members are eligible for USAA membership, which includes access to USAA homeowners insurance policies. However, family members only qualify if the veteran they’re related to is also a USAA member.
You can find out more about USAA membership requirements by calling USAA at 800-531-USAA (8722) and saying or selecting the “Join USAA” option.
Does USAA Offer Military Discounts?
As a military-only company, USAA does not offer military discounts. However, you can save up to 10% when you bundle your home and auto insurance through USAA. USAA also offers a 10% discount on homeowners insurance when you go five years without filing a claim.
Armed Forces Insurance
Armed Force Insurance (AFI) is a reciprocal insurance exchange. This means AFI members own a piece of the company, like a co-op for military insurance policies.
Armed Forces Insurance covers:
- Dwelling and other permanent structures
- Personal property
- Loss of use of the home due to a qualifying event
- Liability and medical
Additional Options for Armed Forced Insurance
Aside from its basic coverage, Armed Forces Insurance also offers these additional coverage options:
- Animal liability
- Identity theft
- Water backup and sump overflow
AFI has other gap coverage available, according to its website. Talk to your agent when you sign up to see what works for you.
Who Can Get Armed Forces Homeowners Insurance?
Licensed homeowners insurance agents can help you get an AFI policy in all 50 states, according to AFI’s website.
Here’s who qualifies for AFI homeowners insurance:
- Active-duty, National Guard and reserve service members, including Coast Guardsmen
- Honorably discharged and retired military members
- Civilian Department of Defense employees
- Active or retired Department of Veterans Affairs employees
- Service academy, Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) or Merchant Marine Academy cadets
- Family members of current or former AFI military members
- Military spouses and surviving spouses of current or former service members
To find out more, call AFI’s customer service at 800-495-8234.
Does AFI Offer Military Discounts?
As a reciprocal insurance company for military members, AFI does not have specific military discounts, but they can help you find great rates and coverage specific to your needs.
Veterans United Insurance
Veterans United Insurance (VUI), a Veterans United affiliate, also offers competitive insurance options for military members.
As an insurance agency, VUI features insurance products from multiple carriers that offer liability, loss of use, dwelling and personal property insurance policies. Terms vary by the carrier.
VUI’s national insurance partners include Nationwide, Progressive, Safeco and Travelers, according to VUI Executive Director Tom Schwarz.
Additional Options for VUI Insurance
Additional options and gap coverages will vary by VUI partner. To discover what gap coverages are available in your area, you can call VUI at 888-625-1794.
Who Can Get VUI Homeowners Insurance?
VUI is available in Washington, D.C., and every state except California, where it operates as Military United Insurance, which provides coverage to California military members and veterans.
Schwarz said VUI’s insurance agents are passionate about serving their military clientele. “We work to build personal connections with everyone we serve,” he said. Reviews by VUI customers bear that out. Veterans United carries a 4.9 out of 5.0 rating on Trustpilot.
In addition to homeowners insurance, VUI provides renters, auto, boat, RV and motorcycle insurance.
Does VUI Offer Military Discounts?
VUI helps veterans find insurance carriers with the best price for their specific situation, Schwartz said, adding that some of those carriers offer military discounts.
The Best Home Insurance Companies With Military Discounts
You don’t have to go with a military-specific company to get a great deal on homeowners insurance. Many traditional insurers offer attractive home insurance military discounts.
You might find lower rates at these traditional carriers than at USAA, Armed Forces Insurance (AFI) and Veterans United Insurance (VUI), but their services and products might not be as military-focused.
Still, you should compare the rates and services between the military home insurance companies and these traditional carriers because you might find a better fit.
Farmers Homeowners Insurance – Best for Loyalty and No-Claims Rewards
Farmers Insurance policies cover home damage caused by:
- Car accidents
- Aircraft crashes
- Falling objects
- Water backup
- Weight of ice, snow and sleet
Farmers offers discounts if you are a non-smoker and if you bundle home and auto insurance. They also have loyalty and “no-claims” discounts available.
Additional Options for Farmers Insurance
Farmers offers two levels of flood insurance, high risk and low-to-moderate risk, depending on where you live. Flood insurance covers up to $250,000 of the value of your home and up to $100,000 of your personal property.
Farmers also offers earthquake insurance for homeowners in earthquake zones.
Who Can Get Farmers Homeowners Insurance?
According to its website, Farmers does not offer homeowners coverage if you live in the District of Columbia or in one of these states:
- New Hampshire
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
- West Virginia
Does Farmers Offer Military Discounts?
Farmers Insurance offers military discounts on homeowners insurance ranging “between 2-8%, depending on the state,” according to Farmers Insurance spokesman Trevor Chapman.
He said these military discounts apply to active duty (including active reserve) service members, retired and honorably discharged military veterans.”
Liberty Mutual Homeowners Insurance – Best for Custom Policies
Liberty Mutual covers standard homeowners insurance items like personal property, home, secondary structures and medical liability in case someone injures themselves. According to its website, Liberty Mutual prides itself in customizable policies, so you won’t end up paying for what you don’t need.
Liberty Mutual does not cover floods and earthquakes in most circumstances, so you will have to purchase additional home hazard insurance to cover these events.
Additional Options for Liberty Mutual
Liberty Mutual has additional coverage options, including high-value items, personal property replacement cost, flood and even water damage.
Liberty Mutual can also automatically adjust your coverage limits to increase at the rate of inflation.
Who Can Get Liberty Mutual Homeowners Insurance?
Liberty Mutual is available in all 50 states and Washington, D.C.
Does Liberty Mutual Offer Military Discounts?
Military members and veterans qualify for discounts on Liberty Mutual home and auto insurance, according to Liberty Mutual spokesman Gregory Kessler, though the amount and availability may vary by state.
“We encourage consumers to visit online or contact a local agent to see if the discounts are available in their state,” Kessler said.
Kemper Personal Insurance Homeowners Coverage – Best for Simplicity
Kemper covers homeowners with three broad policies:
- Kemper Prime Home Essentials covers your essential home insurance needs. You can add coverages to protect the replacement value of your personal valuables and insure against water backup and equipment breakdown.
- Kemper Prime Home Enhanced covers everything that Prime Essentials covers but with higher limits. This policy also protects you from damage caused by water backup, identity theft and automatically pays you replacement cost for your personal property.
- Kemper Prime Home Elite covers everything in the Prime Enhanced policy but with even higher limits.
Additional Coverage Options for Kemper
Kemper offers additional personal property coverage. You can also extend your homeowners coverage with a personal liability umbrella policy.
Where Can You Get Kemper Homeowners Insurance?
Kemper offers homeowners policies in these states:
Does Kemper Homeowners Insurance Offer Military Discounts?
Kemper Personal Insurance offers military discounts to active and retired military members, as well as junior and senior military academy cadets.
GEICO Homeowners Insurance – Best Large Insurance Broker
GEICO is one of the largest insurance brokers in the country. GEICO, which stands for “Government Employees Insurance Company,” began as a government and military employee insurer, according to its website.
Standard GEICO homeowners insurance policies cover property damage, personal property, personal liability, up to $2,000 in jewelry as well as loss of use due to catastrophic events. However, these policies don’t cover earthquakes, nuclear hazards, maintenance issues or flooding from naturally rising water.
Additional Coverage Options for GEICO
To cover naturally rising water, you can add flood and umbrella policies to your GEICO homeowners insurance for increased coverage.
Where Can You Get GEICO Homeowners Insurance?
GEICO is an insurance broker with partners in all 50 states, including Washington, D.C.
Does GEICO Offer Military Discounts?
GEICO offers perks for military members, including up to a 15% military discount on insurance policies.
This discount is available to active duty, National Guard, reserve and retired service members.
Even if you don’t qualify for a military discount, GEICO will lower prices for members of certain organizations, including:
- Association of the United States Army (AUSA)
- Navy Federal Credit Union
- Armed Forces Benefit Association (AFBA)
- Navy League of the United States (NLUS)
GEICO also uniquely offers emergency deployment discounts when you deploy to a DOD-designated imminent danger pay area.
Exact discounts for these programs vary by state. For more information dial (800) MILITARY.
Lemonade – Best for Socially Conscious Customers
Lemonade started using artificial intelligence (AI) to write home insurance policies when it entered the market in 2015, saving customers money by lowering its operating costs. Instead of speaking to a broker, you’ll sign up for a Lemonade policy through a bot named Maya. To file a claim, you can upload videos of damage to their mobile app.
But, Lemonade has a human side despite its automated business model.
Lemonade is a public benefit corporation that splits its customer payments in two. One part covers Lemonade’s fixed costs and profits, while the second part goes into a fund that insures against customer losses. At the end of the year, Lemonade donates whatever is left in this fund to charity.
In 2021, Lemonade donated more than $2.3 million to charities, including the American Civil Liberties Union, March for Our Lives, Objective Zero, The Trevor Project and 350.org, according to its website.
Additional Coverage Options for Lemonade
Lemonade offers extra coverage to insure high-value items like jewelry, musical instruments, cameras, art and more against damage, theft and loss.
Lemonade only offers earthquake coverage in California but it’s working on expanding the option to more states, according to its website.
Where Can You Get Lemonade Homeowners Insurance
According to its website, Lemonade Homeowners Insurance is currently available in the following states:
- District of Columbia
- New Jersey
- New York
You can also get a Lemonade policy in France, Germany or the Netherlands. The company said it plans to expand coverage options to the rest of Europe as well.
Does Lemonade Offer Military Discounts?
Lemonade doesn’t offer a military discount, but its rates are low for the homeowners insurance market. but we did find rates that are lower than typical.
The average cost of homeowners insurance for a house with a replacement value of $200,000-$299,000 was $1,113 per year, according to the 2022 report by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).
Some Lemonade policies cost as little as $300 per year, according to Lemonade’s website.
However, policy costs vary by state, home condition and depth of coverage.
Online Insurance Marketplaces
Online insurance marketplaces can help you compare homeowners insurance policies.
Smart Financial is an online insurance marketplace that matches you with insurance offers from carriers in your area.
It doesn’t provide rates for comparison on the site. Instead, a Smart Financial representative will contact you for more details.
When we tested the marketplace, we found insurance quotes about 20% lower than the market average.
If you want a military discount, you’ll have to ask when you purchase your policy. Smart Financial does not have partnerships with military-focused carriers like USAA, AFI or VUI.
SuperMoney sports a clean, well-organized interface that ranks homeowners insurance companies without asking for your personal information – a bonus if you don’t want calls or emails.
From its main page, you can narrow down SuperMoney’s results with various filters, including military discount availability.
More Ways for Military Families to Save on Home Insurance
- Bundle: Bundling home, auto and personal property insurance policies can save you hundreds on your insurance.
- Keep a high deductible: Keeping a higher deductible can lower your homeowners insurance rates, though you’ll have to cover a higher amount on any repairs before your insurance rates kick in. It may be worth it if you have enough cash savings to cover a higher deductible.
- Review outdoor feature coverage: Check your policy to see what outdoor features – detached garages, hot tubs or sheds – your homeowners’ insurance automatically covers. Don’t insure these separately unless their value justifies it.
- Carefully consider high-value item coverage: Your basic homeowners insurance policy may already insure your valuable items up to a certain limit. For example, the maximum total payout for all your jewelry might be $1,500 in a standard policy. Only buy additional coverage if your high-value items cost significantly more than your insurance already covers.
- See what discounts are available: Insurance companies may offer discounts for home protective measures. For example, in addition to USAA’s homeowners insurance discounts, the company also provides discounts on ADT security system monitoring. Other offers may include smart home devices, cameras, water or temperature sensors. Don’t forget to ask for military discounts as well.
- Go with the same company: Switching insurance companies can save you money, but so can sticking with insurers who reward safe driving and customer loyalty. Ask your insurer if they discount policies for customers after a certain number of years or for not filing a claim for a certain period.
Military Homeowners Insurance FAQs
Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about homeowners insurance for military members and veterans.
How Much Does Home Insurance for Military Members Cost?
Several factors impact your homeowners insurance cost, including your home’s rebuild cost, where you live and your credit history.
The average annual homeowners insurance premium in 2019 was $1,278, according to a National Association of Insurance Commissioners report. For a house insured for $200,000 to $299,000, customers paid an average of $1,113.
A military discount could lower your rate, so ask your insurance company if they offer one.
Who Has the Best Insurance Rates for Military?
Insurance rates depend on a variety of factors. When shopping for homeowners insurance, it might be tempting to go with the company with the largest advertised military discount.
Under that theory, GEICO could offer military members the best homeowners insurance for veterans since it has the highest advertised military discount. But, that doesn’t necessarily mean that GEICO – or even a competing military-only insurance company – has the best rates for all military members.
Shopping around is key to finding the best veterans home insurance in your area. Always compare policies from a few different insurers before you purchase a policy.
Who Is Eligible for Military-Specific Homeowners Insurance and Discounts?
Companies that offer military and veteran discounts on homeowners insurance may include active-duty, National Guard and reserve service members, as well as veterans and their family members. However, some companies may not apply the discount for military family members, or they may limit discount availability to active-duty service members alone. Always ask who qualifies for a military discount when you purchase a policy.
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