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Rates Fluctuate for Homeowners Insurance Michigan and Ohio Residents Pay

By Mike Heuer

Located next to one another and facing similar perils, homeowners in Michigan and Ohio pay similar rates for their family homes. When living in the Great Lakes region of the Midwest, high winds, tornadoes, hailstorms, snowstorms and potential flooding rank among the most destructive elements nature can throw at homes and other properties. And rates for insuring those homes can fluctuate greatly.

During 2010, the average rate for homeowners insurance Michigan residents paid was $743 per year with rental insurance costing about $200 annually, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. The average cost of homeowners insurance Michigan families paid was less than the national average of $909 for the same time period.

In the nearby Buckeye State, the average rate for homeowners insurance Ohio residents paid was $685, according to the Ohio Dept. of Insurance. But rates have been climbing in Ohio with an average increase of 4.1 percent over the past year, according to the Ohio Dept. of Insurance.

In both states, the respective departments of insurance regulate and approve all homeowners insurance rate changes. And both states allow for HO-3 insurance plans, which are the most popular and can be enhanced with endorsements to tailor coverage for specialized needs and situations. While rates are lower than national averages in both states, Ohio’s rank among the lowest in the nation, even with rates climbing during the past year, according to the Ohio Dept. of Insurance. The average rates for homeowners insurance Ohio residents paid ranked as the sixth-lowest in the United States.

The low rank means more insurance increases are likely for homeowners in the Buckeye State. If residents find themselves paying more than they feel is reasonable, they can shop around for other deals and quite possibly get lower rates through other home insurers.

“Ohio’s competitive insurance market continues to provide consumers with choice and lower insurance premiums compared to the rest of the country,” said Mary Taylor, Ohio Lt. Gov. and director of the state Dept. of Insurance. “I encourage all Ohioans to review their insurance coverage regularly to ensure they have the best policy at the best price to meet their needs.”

Likewise, Michigan residents can compare homeowners insurance rates and find the best deals for them from many of the same insurance companies that operate in Ohio. Because the two states are adjacent and have very similar potential perils, many of the same homeowners insurance firms are licensed to provide coverage in each state.

Michigan Dept. of Insurance officials heartily advise residents to shop around and ensure the coverage they get is at the most affordable rate possible. Many insurers have rates that vary greatly around the state, and insurance officials say the best deal very well might be with a firm with whom a homeowner is not familiar.

The state provides an “insurance entity search” site on the Internet so residents can learn which insurers provide homeowners insurance coverage in which areas of the state and then shop around for the best deal.