Insuring Your Tiny Home Investment

Insuring Your Tiny Home Investment

It’s no wonder the popularity of living in a Tiny Home has grown exponentially – they offer more economical living, environmental friendliness, and greater opportunities for quirky and personalized design. They’re easier to take care of and may better fit the lifestyles of small families and empty-nesters. They also offer a simpler lifestyle, with no room for clutter or things you don’t need. Adding to that, a Tiny House on Wheels is portable, allowing their owners to travel cross-country to wherever their heart desires; enabling Tiny House owners to move virtually anywhere that’s permissible by zoning regulations.

But there is just one catch — getting insurance for your Tiny Home can be a bit more difficult to insure than a traditional home, leaving owners exposed in case of theft, fire, and other disasters. Luckily, insurance companies have begun to expand their offerings to offer new products to these shoppers of the growing trend.

Even though tiny houses are, well, tiny, they still cost tens, if not, hundreds of thousands of dollars.  And, if you plan on insuring your tiny house, you need to make sure it’s certified by NOAH Certified or RVIA. We are getting more and more calls on a daily basis about certifying a home for insurance purposes.  A lot of these calls are after the fact – after the home is already built, but they discover the insurance company is requiring a NOAH certification. Do your research BEFORE you build!

What Kind of Insurance Do I Need?

This will depend on where your Tiny Home is located, is it on wheels or a foundation?

If you do plan on moving your tiny house to a different location at one point (or mobilizing it indefinitely) you may need to consider a policy that’s similar to auto insurance. If you’re renting out your Tiny Home through a service like Airbnb or you’re using it as a vacation home, you’re going to need different coverage than if you live there full time.

There are numerous insurance options to consider for unique structures, such as RV or trailer insurance, comprehensive liability, personal property, or perhaps even a specialty insurance policy.

Consider the following tips for insuring your Tiny Home:

  1. Shop around:When you’re looking for something so specific, it’s easy to settle on the first policy you find. However, this can result in losing out on potential discounts and savings. Ask for referrals and shop around to find the best insurance policy.
  2. Do your research: While it may be less common to find a tiny house insurance policy, some companies are beginning to specialize and get on board the Tiny House movement. Search the internet and give this a lot of time before selecting a policy.
  3. Find what’s right for you:Each tiny house is different, which means there’s a policy out there that will fit your unique situation. Don’t settle for something standard that may not provide the coverage you need in the event of a disaster.

How Much Does Tiny House Insurance Cost?

My research is that it’s less than $1000 per year, an average of $850 per year.  But there’s no set price for tiny house insurance. It depends on numerous factors, including:

  • Your tiny home’s construction, size, value, and RVIA/NOAH status.
  • The value of your personal belongings.
  • How you plan to use the home (e.g., parked in a tiny house community or on the road 52 weeks a year).
  • The coverage you want, including any extras, such as a trip endorsement.
  • Your claims history.
  • Your credit history.

Do I Have to Insure My Tiny House?

If you used a mortgage or other loan to finance your tiny house, your lender will more than likely require you to buy insurance (the same way lenders do for traditional homes and cars). And if you transport your tiny home, most states require you to have liability coverage, just as for a regular RV. Otherwise, there’s no legal requirement for you to insure your tiny house. Still, a tiny house is a serious investment, so it makes financial sense to protect it with a good insurance policy.

Questions To Have the Answers To Before You Call:

  • How much is your Tiny Home worth?
  • What is the square footage?
  • When was it built?
  • What materials is it made of, especially exterior wall and roofing materials?
  • How was it constructed? (Prefabricated, built by contractors, built yourself, etc.)
  • Is it mobile? If so, where and how do you plan on traveling with it?
  • Who lives in the tiny home? Will children or pets be living there?
  • What types of appliances are inside? 
  • How do you heat or cool it?
  • Does your house have plumbing with running water? 
  • Are there water sources nearby that firefighters could use in case of fire? (Even a nearby pool or natural water source like a pond could count for this.)
  • Is it certified and by whom?
  • What do you want out of tiny home insurance? What coverage (fire, theft, liability, etc.) is most important to you?

 

An independent insurance agent will work with you to put together a tiny house insurance package that meets all of your needs & will help you walk away with all the protection necessary to keep your home safe. It is without a doubt worth the investment because you never know!

Be ready for anything that comes along!

Thank you and until next time, Keep Living Tiny & Dreaming Big!