There’s not much you can do to prevent your home from getting damaged by storms, fires, robberies, and other perils, but you can protect yourself financially. While not legally required in Timmins, home insurance gives you the peace of mind you need to move forward after a disaster.
Learn more about home insurance in Timmins, the types of coverage you can get, and how much it could cost below.
Why Do I Need Home Insurance in Timmins?
The most likely reason you’ll need home insurance in Timmins is to protect yourself financially in case the unexpected happens.
Natural disasters such as floods, storms, and earthquakes and human threats such as theft and vandalism can cause costly damage to your home. This can set even the most financially secure homeowner back.
A home insurance policy can help you cover the costs of repairing or replacing your home, as well as any belongings inside it. The payout can also be used to rent temporary housing in the event that your home is uninhabitable.
Aside from this, there are two other common reasons people may need home insurance:
Pay for liabilities
Accidents happen, even if you’re careful. If someone gets injured on your property, home insurance can help you pay for medical expenses, legal fees, and other costs.
Take out a loan
Although you are not legally required to have home insurance in Timmins, some loan providers may ask you to secure one before you can get a mortgage. Lenders have a vested interest in your home, and they’ll be more likely to approve your loan if you take steps to protect their investment.
How Does Home Insurance in Timmins Work?
As with other insurance products like tenant insurance or condo insurance, Timmins home insurance gives you financial coverage for your home in the event of certain unforeseen events. By purchasing a home insurance policy, you can file a claim that allows you to handle the cost of damage or losses covered under your policy terms.
There are three types of home insurance policies that you can buy in Timmins. Here’s a basic overview of each type:
This is usually the most affordable type of home insurance, where you can choose coverage only against specific perils. If it’s not listed in your basic policy, your insurer won’t give you coverage for that risk.
This is typically the most expensive option but also the one that offers the most protection for your home and belongings in it. Under comprehensive home insurance, you’ll have protection against all risks that aren’t explicitly excluded, as well as risks that don’t require optional add-ons.
This mid-price option offers comprehensive coverage for your home but basic coverage for your personal belongings. This means your home will be protected from all risks except those that need add-ons or are specifically excluded, while your possessions are only protected against risks listed in your policy.
The typical Timmins home insurance policy may come with these types of home insurance coverage and liability coverage. Here’s a quick description of each standard coverage inclusion:
- Dwelling: This covers damages to your home (a.k.a. your dwelling) and its attached structures, like a garage. Coverage is typically for damages caused by risks such as lightning or fire, depending on the terms of your policy.
- Detached private structure: This covers damages to private, detached structures on your property, such as a detached garage or tool shed.
- Personal property: Home insurance policies also cover your personal property, such as furniture and appliances. Note that some special or high-value items like artwork may need additional coverage.
- Additional living expenses: If you’re suddenly displaced from your home because of an insured risk, your policy will also cover the cost of temporary housing.
- Personal liability coverage: This covers settlements and legal expenses in case someone is accidentally injured on your property.
- Voluntary property damage: This covers direct damage or loss that you’ve unintentionally caused to someone else’s property. This also applies to unintentional loss or damage caused by a minor who is 12 years old or younger in your care.
- Voluntary medical expenses: This coverage helps you pay for the medical expenses of a person you’ve unintentionally injured on your property or someone who accidentally hurts themselves on your property. This usually covers up to one year of expenses up to one year from the time of injury, with certain cost caps.
Apart from the standard coverage offered by Ontario home insurance policies, there are other types of coverage you can purchase for extra protection for your property. These are some of the most common coverage add-ons:
- Credit and debit card forgery: This additional coverage will offset any financial losses or other damage you suffer because of credit or debit card forgery.
- Earthquakes: This add-on covers damage or losses due to earthquakes.
- Flooding: Protection from flooding typically includes both overland water and sewer back-up coverage. While you may opt to purchase these water-related add-ons separately, you may want to combine them into a flooding protection package because of severe weather and other regional risks.
- Freezer food: This protects food in your property’s freezers if your freezer malfunctions or there’s a power outage.
- Home sharing: Standard policies don’t cover loss or damage caused when you rent out your home. This add-on covers your property if you plan to use it for short-term rentals on sites like Airbnb.
- Identity theft: This covers the cost of replacing crucial documents for identification, such as your birth certificate and driver’s licence.
- Lock replacement: Some insurers offer to cover the cost of replacing your home’s locks.
- Mass evacuation: If the government issues an evacuation order due to an incident like a flood, this add-on covers some expenses incurred during your absence from your home.
- Overland water: Rainfall or thawing snow can cause nearby freshwater and wastewater sources to overflow beyond their typical levels. This add-on covers damage caused by this excess water when it seeps into your property.
- Personal valuables: Standard plans offer limited coverage known as riders for items like jewelry and artwork. This add-on increases the limits for these items in the event of loss or damage.
- Sewer backup coverage: If sewage or wastewater comes up from a main sewer, this add-on will cover the damage and losses caused.
Who Provides Home Insurance Quotes in Timmins?
There are different ways that you can get a home insurance quote in Timmins. Here are the four providers that you can use or contact for home insurance rates:
Insurance brokers can represent you as a buyer and get quotes from multiple insurance companies, as well as advice on choosing a policy.
A direct writer is an insurance company that doesn’t have independent agents offering their quotes and policies. Typically, direct writers offer their products through their official websites and/or their call centres.
Insurance agents are independent professionals who can provide quotes and policy information from the companies they work with.
Insurance aggregators are online platforms like MyChoice that allow you to compare rates and coverage options from multiple providers. Because these allow you to input your information and receive quotes from multiple providers in one place, this can save you time and effort.
What Is Not Included in a Typical Home Insurance Policy?
Even if you’ve opted for a highly comprehensive home insurance policy, there are some risks that insurers explicitly don’t include as a covered peril. These are called “exclusions” by home insurers.
Here are the most common home insurance exclusions:
If your home was damaged due to criminal activity, it won’t be covered by your insurance policy.
Damage from tenants
Generally, home insurance companies require specific coverage for homeowners/landlords who plan to rent out their properties. A standard home insurance policy won’t include coverage if you rent your home out and the tenant causes damage.
Most policies exclude this risk, but you can cover earthquake losses and damage as an add-on to a standard policy.
Failure to maintain your home
Damage or losses caused by poor home upkeep (e.g., clogged storm drains, broken bannisters) won’t be covered, as your insurer deems it your responsibility to manage wear and tear.
Flooding is typically not covered by a standard policy, but it may be included as an add-on.
Home business activities
Home businesses will need separate home-based business insurance to cover home or equipment damage.
Because this is considered a preventable risk, most insurers don’t cover insect damage.
Mortgage or property taxes
These are separate expenses handled by policy owners as they’re unrelated to your home insurance policy.
Mould caused by poor home maintenance is typically excluded by home insurance policies. Note that this is separate from mould caused by an insured peril, which will be covered by your policy.
Vacant dwelling risks
Many insurers may void your insurance if you leave your home vacant for a prolonged period.
This is by no means an exclusive list of risks typically excluded from a home insurance policy in Timmins. Talk to your home insurance provider to see what’s covered by your policy in case of loss or damage.
How Much Does Home Insurance in Timmins Usually Cost?
Home insurance in Timmins costs an average of $2,017/year, which is quite higher than the Ontario average of $1,368.
That said, insurance providers calculate premiums based on a wide range of factors, such as the value and age of your property, where you live, and what kind of coverage you need. At the same time, insurers calculate these risks differently, so you can expect to get different quotes from different providers, even for the same home.
Why Are Timmins Home Insurance Rates so Expensive?
There are three factors that may be driving up Timmins home insurance rates. Here’s a quick explanation of why these things make premiums higher in Timmins:
- Greater number of older properties: Most homes in Timmins are quite old, so it’s more likely that they have older systems for heating, plumbing, and electricity. This increases your likelihood of filing a claim for a fire or flood.
- Higher real estate values: Real estate prices indirectly affect home insurance premiums. As home values go up, so do the cost of rebuilding and the amount of coverage you’ll need from a policy.
- Housing density: Timmins is densely populated, and most of its homes are connected houses or apartments with very little space between units. This increases the risk of spreading fires between homes.
What Determines the Cost of Home Insurance in Timmins?
The cost of home insurance in Timmins varies depending on several considerations, such as your zip code, your property type, and even your credit score. Here are some of the different cost factors for home insurance in Timmins:
Detached private structures like tool sheds, pool houses, and gazebos may increase your home insurance premiums. Further, a pool typically increases your premiums because of the increased risk of drowning, as well as the extra cost of maintaining a surrounding fence and lock. Make sure your home insurance covers all of your detached structures.
The majority of Canadian provinces use your credit score to determine your home insurance premium. This is because it’s often perceived that a bad credit score increases the risk of providing home insurance, as it increases the odds of late or non-payment of premiums.
If your home is older, in poor condition, or needs to update systems like heating and plumbing, it may be pricier to insure. This is because older electrical, heating, and plumbing systems increase the risk of certain accidents like fires and water damage from leaks.
If you live in an area prone to natural disasters like earthquakes or flooding, your premiums may be higher. Insurers also tend to charge higher premiums in areas where more homeowners have filed claims over recent years.
Replacement cost is based on how much it would cost to rebuild your home at its present condition and value. The higher your home’s present value, the more expensive it is to insure. Note that when factoring in replacement cost, you’ll need to inform your home insurer of any expensive items or upgrades like jewellery or artwork which will need extra coverage.
Past Claims History
Simply put, the more claims you have in a 10-year period, the higher your monthly premiums will be. As a general rule, make sure that the cost of your potential claim is higher than your policy deductible, which is the amount you have to pay before your insurer covers the rest.
Some insurance providers will ask you to disclose the number, type, and breed of any pets you may have, as some pets are considered an additional liability risk.
Whether you live in a condo unit or a single-detached home, different types of dwellings will be evaluated differently by an Timmins insurer as each comes with different risks.
Renovations And Improvements
Some improvements can lower or increase your home insurance premiums. For example, converting a room into a home theatre may increase your home’s present value, so your premiums may go up. On the other hand, improvements that increase home safety like an alarm system may lower your premiums. Note that you should tell your home insurer both before and after you renovate your Timmins home.
The average asphalt shingle roof will begin to wear down after approximately 10 to 15 years. Unless it’s properly maintained and repaired, your roof may increase the risk of letting water leak in and damage your house. Timmins home insurers may lower your quotes if they see that your home’s roof is made with high-quality, durable materials.
Smoking Or Non-Smoking Policyholders
If you’re a non-smoker, an insurer may offer lower premiums as they consider it less likely that a cigarette or other smoking device will start a fire in your home.
While conducting business in your home won’t always increase your home insurance premiums, this depends greatly on the kind of business you’re running. For example, you can expect to pay more if you’re listing your home for short-term rentals or running a home-based catering company because there is more risk of liabilities or accidents.
Type Of Coverage You Choose
If you get a policy with a higher deductible, this will result in a lower premium. Additionally, the higher the coverage and the more risks you are protected against, the higher your premiums will be.
Your Chosen Insurer
Different insurers may offer varying quotes even for the same type of policy. Coverage costs vary between companies, so it’s important to shop around to find the best deal.
What Risks Affect Homeowners in Timmins?
If you plan to buy a home in Timmins, it’s important to know the specific risks you may encounter in the area. Below are some of the most common dangers that affect Timmins homeowners:
The Mattagami River runs through Timmins and occasionally floods due to excessive rainfall or thawing snow, so homeowners in the area may want to get overland flood coverage. This is typically not a standard inclusion, so you’ll have to add it to your policy.
Hail and storms
While most homes can withstand small hailstorms, large hail can damage the structural integrity of your property. Meanwhile, strong winds can loosen your roof, uproot trees, and cause objects to fly into your home.
The main risk associated with extremely low temperatures is that they can freeze and burst your pipes. This can result in serious damage and cost a lot to repair. Temperatures in Timmins can fall well below freezing during winter, hitting average lows of -5°F in the colder months.
Wildfires are a major risk across Ontario, with many residents being forced to evacuate their homes in the first quarter of the year due to the smoke that has blanketed their neighbourhood. While even residents further away are affected by the air quality, those most vulnerable include those living near forested areas. Fortunately, fire protection is included in most home insurance policies.
Does Where You Live in Timmins Affect Your Home Insurance?
Where you live in Timmins can affect your home insurance. Premiums are calculated based on your risk, and the location of your property is a major contributor to that. Here are some of the ways that home insurance companies may take where you live into consideration:
If you live in an area in Timmins that’s prone to natural disasters, insurers may charge you higher premiums to accommodate the increased risk. For example, homes near the Mattagami river bank (e.g., Mountjoy and Mattagami Heights) may experience a lot of flooding, while residents near the underground mine workings in Schumacher are more prone to sinkholes.
Older homes usually have more issues and need more repairs, so insurers often charge higher for these properties. Certain areas in Timmins have mostly older houses on the market, such as Hill District.
Property crime rates
Property crime is the most common crime in Timmins, with 430 break-and-enters reported in 2021. If you live in a neighbourhood that has a particularly high property crime rate, your premiums may reflect that.
Census Data: Housing Data in Timmins
Interested in the housing market in Timmins? Below are some statistics pulled from the 2021 Census of Population:
Type of Occupied Dwelling
Most of the homes in Timmins are single-detached houses, comprising 65.1% of all homes. Apartment buildings come in at a distant second, with buildings with less and more than five storeys making up 13.9% of homes in Timmins.
Owner vs Renter Stats/Condo vs Non-Condo Owners
Out of those sampled, 67% of Timmins residents own their homes, while 33.1% rent. There are more non-condominium owners (97.5%) than condo owners (2.5%).
Private Dwellings by Period of Construction: New or Older Homes?
If you buy a house in Timmins, there’s a big chance it’s an older home. 93% of the homes in the neighbourhood were built before 2000, compared to just 1.5% built from 2016 to 2021.
Major Repairs or Just Maintenance Needed?
A whopping 92% of dwellings in Timmins only require minor repairs and maintenance. The remaining 8% need major repairs.
How You Can Get Cheap Home Insurance in Timmins
If you’re trying to save money on your preferred home insurance coverage, here are some important steps to take:
Comparison shopping between different providers will help you find the best rate for your desired policy type. Use an insurance aggregator like MyChoice to get and examine immediate quotes from various Timmins home insurers.
Increase your deductible
You can ask your insurer if you can increase your deductible, a.k.a. the amount you pay before your insurer pays out the claim. Increasing this reduces the risk for your insurer that you’ll submit a claim, so they may offer to lower your premiums.
Bundle with auto insurance
Some companies offer bundled home and auto insurance at a good discount for both policies.
Renovate old home systems like wiring and plumbing
Renovating to remove known risks like faulty wiring and old plumbing may help reduce your premiums.
While hefty annual premium payments may be daunting, some insurance providers give you a discount in exchange as it reduces their administrative costs.
Install monitored alarms
The safer you make your home against thieves, the higher the chances that you’ll go claim-free. This may convince your home insurer to offer lower premiums. Install monitored home security systems to deter break-ins and get immediate notifications of disturbances.
FAQs About Home Insurance in Timmins
Can you cancel home insurance in Timmins?
Yes, you can cancel your home insurance in Timmins. Check your policy’s terms and conditions for any fees or penalties you may incur, as these are typically charged if you cancel your policy before its end date.
Are Timmins home insurance fees tax deductible?
Generally, Timmins home insurance fees are not tax-deductible as they’re usually considered personal expenses. However, they may be tax-deductible in certain circumstances, such as running a home-based business or having a designated office area in your home. Consult a tax professional to learn if your insurance policies can be considered deductibles in your situation.
Do Timmins real estate prices affect the cost of home insurance?
Yes, Timmins real estate prices affect the cost of home insurance. Because high real estate prices translate to higher repair or restoration costs in the event of loss or damage, home insurers may charge higher premiums in higher-priced areas. The average price of a Timmins home is within the $250,000 to $350,000 range, making it significantly more affordable than the Ontario average of $950,000 to $1 million.
Unlike a majority of the Ontario market, home prices in Timmins increased from 2021 to 2022 despite fewer sales. One of the contributors to this increase was an individual investor who bought over 300 homes, many of which were in Timmins. Home sales, average home prices, and new listings are all down in 2023, and the area is expected to see a price drop later this year.
However, located far away from major urban centers, Timmins has an abundance of land, which relieves the pressure on the housing market and drives prices down. People also tend to stay in Timmins long-term, reducing the demand for homes.
It’s important to note that remote work trends and annual flooding in nearby municipalities may drive more people to the area, impacting the housing market.
Do I need home insurance in Timmins for Airbnbs?
Yes, you need a specific type of home insurance in Timmins for Airbnbs. Property owners who run Airbnbs can apply for a customized rental insurance policy to protect against property damage or liabilities.
What factors aren’t used to calculate Timmins home insurance rates?
Factors that insurance providers don’t consider when calculating Timmins home insurance rates include the following:
Sexual orientation and gender
How expensive is insurance for a home in Timmins compared to the rest of Ontario?
Insurance for a home in Timmins is on the more expensive side. Some factors which may affect this difference include the cost of living in this city, property values, and the incidence of natural disasters such as earthquakes and storms.
In Timmins, the cost of living is about 30% cheaper than the provincial average. However, Timmins lies along the Mattagami River, which has seen several flood warnings issued over the past year. A recent flood that hit the nearby James Bay coast also forced thousands of residents to evacuate to Timmins, which may have reduced the available houses on the market.
Consult your preferred home insurer to find out what other factors may cause your Timmins policy quotes from them to be higher than the provincial average.