Michigan residents have an edge when it comes to homeowners insurance. Premiums here are among the cheapest in the country, at almost $300 less per year than the national average. Of course, a low premium isn’t all that matters. Between harsh winters, a windy lakeshore, and old homes with dated construction, Michigan is rife with potential home insurance claims.
What does that mean for you? You’ll need a policy that’s not only affordable, but well-rounded and backed by strong financials. We compared Michigan’s top five home insurance providers to see how they perform in these areas.
How We Found the Best Homeowners Insurance in Michigan
We evaluated Michigan’s biggest home insurance providers by market share, using the same criteria set down in our national review of the Best Homeowners Insurance. In short, we looked for strong financial backing, ample coverage, smooth claims handling, and great customer service. We also compared sample quotes to see how prices stack up, but remember: Cost is personal. You’ll have to request individual quotes to see which company is the best deal for you.
The 6 Best Homeowners Insurance Companies in Michigan
Michigan Homeowners Insurance Reviews
State Farm is an all-around strong provider for homeowners insurance. It starts with great coverage: State Farm’s policies cover sewer backup, freezing, damage from the weight of snow or ice, and other basics important to Michiganders. It’s also one of only two providers that offers an endorsement for building code upgrades. This is an important add-on for older homes: If your house is damaged by a covered peril, the endorsement will help pay for repairs that bring it up to current local building codes.
Perhaps equally important, State Farm has the credentials needed to back its policies up. The company pulls “A” financial strength ratings from A.M. Best, meaning it’ll be able to pay out on claims of any size. It also earned a rare four out of five stars from J.D. Power, demonstrating that customers are very satisfied with pricing, claims handling, and the quality of service they’ve received.
We’re also impressed with how affordable State Farm is. It offers generous discounts that help keep costs low for homeowners: For instance, you could save up to 17% simply by bundling home and auto insurance together. Allstate has similar discounts — often with higher percentages — but State Farm’s baseline quotes were a little cheaper for our sample homes, which made the two about equal. We’d recommend getting quotes from both companies to see which is cheapest for you.
Allstate is a close runner-up to State Farm for Michigan homeowners insurance. It pulls a slightly higher, “A+” financial rating from A.M. Best, but a lower score — three out of five — from J.D. Power. This lag in customer satisfaction is the main reason we rank Allstate behind State Farm, but don’t let that put you off. There’s still a lot to love about this company.
Allstate’s is also an affordable option in our experience. Like State Farm, it offers a long list of discounts: You can save by bundling home and auto insurance, installing smoke, fire, and burglar alarms, setting up autopay, and more. Allstate’s discounts tend to be heftier than State Farm’s, too. For example, bundling can save you up to 30%, compared to State Farm’s 17%. Like we said, though, pricing is individual. You’ll have to look at personalized quotes to see which company can save you the most.
Where Auto-Owners really stands out, though, is in the claims department. It’s the only one of Michigan’s top five providers that took home “Excellent” marks in Consumer Reports’ claims satisfaction study. Customers were especially impressed with the ease of reaching an agent and the high-quality service they received. If great customer support is make-or-break for you, then we recommend starting your search with Auto-Owners insurance.
The only real drawback to working with Auto-Owners is its sparse online presence. The company’s website offers very little policy information, and there’s no way to get a quote online. To learn more about coverage options and pricing, you’ll have to get in touch with your local agency. That said, this level of face-to-face contact may be a good thing if you’re new to home insurance and need a little extra help shopping for your policy.
Auto Club Insurance
Auto Club also gives discounts for recent upgrades to roofs, plumbing, or electrical systems. Many companies require these upgrades for older homes (think 40-plus years) before they’ll even insure them. So if you’re planning on renovating anyways, check with Auto Club to see whether this can help you save on your homeowners policy.
Savings aside, we appreciate how straightforward Auto Club is with its policy information. Coverage options are clearly listed on the company’s website, including Michigan essentials like tornado, windstorm, hail, frozen plumbing, and damage from the weight of snow or ice. Auto Club has the financials to back its policies up, too, with an “A-” rating from A.M. Best (which qualifies as “Excellent”).
That said, we weren’t able to gauge how Auto Club stacks up for price — you must enter your AAA member number to even begin the quote process. If you are part of the Auto Club, we recommend getting a quote to see whether this company’s excellent coverage is a good deal for you.
Hanover is Michigan’s fifth most popular provider by market share — though it doesn’t put up quite as good of a showing as the others on this list. As far as ratings, Hanover takes home a respectable “A” for financial strength, but a much lower score from J.D. Power: only two out of five points for customer satisfaction. This leaves us with some concerns about the company’s responsiveness and claims handling.
Still, Hanover has some nice endorsement options that make it worth checking out. We’re especially impressed with the company’s extended replacement coverage, which insures your home for 125% to 150% of its actual cost, depending on the package you choose. This is an important endorsement for older homes, which may cost more to rebuild than the property is currently worth.
Hanover’s highest-tier policy, Platinum Select Premium, also includes valuable personal property that’s not normally covered by home insurance — e.g. jewelry, furs, silverware, and fragile items. This makes it a great choice for antique lovers or collectors.
Like Auto-Owners and Auto Club Insurance, Hanover doesn’t offer quotes online. You’ll have to contact an agent directly to see what kind of pricing this company can offer you. But if you have an older, expensive home — especially one that’s full of valuable items — it may be worth taking a look at Hanover for its specialty coverage.
USAA is another Michigan homeowners insurance option, but only for members of the U.S. armed forces (and their immediate family). USAA is one of the top ten insurers in the state, occupying about 3% of the market share. They consistently get high scores for their customer service – at 905/1000 according to J.D. Power and 95/100 according to Consumer Reports. Aside from their top ratings in customer satisfaction, they also hold the highest score for financial strength at A++, so you can be sure USAA is a sound investment for your homeowners policy.
One of the only drawbacks? USAA is exclusively for members of the military and their immediate family. Unfortunately, that means we weren’t able to go through the process of getting a quote online or through an agent – we didn’t qualify. However, if you are part of this group, USAA checks out to be one of the better options for homeowners insurance policies in Michigan.
Guide to Homeowners Insurance in Michigan
Look for sudden/accidental water coverage
Michigan’s unpredictable weather takes its toll on local property. Damages from wind and heavy snow are just the beginning — even something as simple as an unexpected cold front can lead to major insurance claims. In fact, frozen pipes are one of the most common sources of household flooding (and thus, water-related damages).
Since this is such a frequent occurrence in Michigan, you’ll want to be sure your homeowners insurance protects against water damage. Most insurance providers don’t cover damage to frozen pipes themselves, but all five of the providers we reviewed do offer coverage for damage done by the flooding water. Look for “sudden/accidental water coverage” on your policy. Homeowners in flood-prone areas can also purchase flood insurance separately through FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program.
Double-check that your septic tank is included
If your house is on a septic system, make sure it’s covered by your homeowners insurance policy. Michigan has some of the weakest septic regulations in the nation: More than 4,200 residential septic tanks failed in 2015, with an average cost of around $5,000 to replace. Choosing a home insurance provider that covers your septic system ensures that you won’t have to pay those $5,000 out of pocket if something goes wrong.
Always shop around before you buy
The price of your home insurance is unique to you. Annual premiums hinge on many factors, including where you live, how much your house is worth, the levels of coverage you choose, and more. Every provider weighs these factors a little differently, so you won’t know which one is cheapest for you until you’ve compared personalized quotes. We suggest checking prices with all five of Michigan’s top providers before buying — although three of them require you to call an agent, it will be worth the extra effort if you can save money in the long run.
Michigan Homeowners Insurance FAQ
What’s the average cost of homeowners insurance in Michigan?
Michigan’s average annual premium for homeowners insurance is $908. This falls well below the national average of $1,173 per year. That said, your own premium will vary depending on where you live, the cost of your home, and your assets. We recommend getting quotes from a few of Michigan’s top providers to see which one offers the best price for your situation.
What are Michigan’s homeowners insurance cancellation laws?
It’s rare for an insurer to cancel an active policy, but there are a few circumstances where they might do so. In Michigan, home insurance providers have the right to inspect your property periodically for safety risks. They may cancel your policy if they find unacceptable hazards. The most common is a roof that’s not up to code, but you could also be jeopardized by leaning trees, exposed wires, faulty construction, and more. Other cancellable offenses include not paying your premium in full, or filing claims too frequently.
Does Michigan homeowners insurance cover dog bites?
Liability coverage is a big part of homeowners insurance. It covers any injury sustained in your property — including if your dog bites someone. Luckily, Michigan is one of the few states where insurance companies are not allowed to deny coverage based on any specific dog breed. That said, dog owners should still make sure they’re adequately covered: The average claim paid out for a dog bite in 2017 was just over $38,000 in Michigan. Check that your policy includes canine liability, and make sure your limits are high enough to cover an accident.