The Best Homeowners Insurance in North Carolina for 2021

If you live along the coast, prepare to pay a lot more for coverage.
Doug SiborAug 12, 2021

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North Carolina sees more hurricane landfalls than most U.S. states, which means the state’s homeowners — especially along the coast and Outer Banks — tend to pay more for insurance.

A NerdWallet analysis of 12 insurance companies in the state found homeowners in North Carolina pay an average of $1,812 per year for home insurance; that's over $200 above the national average of $1,585. Keep in mind, however, that these rates are estimates and depend on many different factors, so yours may vary.

Best homeowners insurance companies in North Carolina

Several of NerdWallet's Best Home Insurance Companies of 2021 offer policies in North Carolina. Here they are, along with their average annual premiums:

Company

NerdWallet rating

Average annual premium

Nationwide

5.0

NerdWallet rating 

$1,906.

State Farm

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

$1,487.

USAA*

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

$1,579.

*USAA is available only to active military, veterans and their families.

You can customize your homeowners policy with numerous add-ons from these companies, but below are the types of coverage that generally come standard:

Type of coverage

What it does

Dwelling

Pays to repair or rebuild the structure of your home.

Other structures

Covers damage to unattached structures such as a shed or fence.

Personal property

Pays to repair or replace personal belongings such as furniture or clothing.

Additional living expenses

Pays for hotel stays, restaurant meals or other expenses if you have to live elsewhere while your home undergoes covered repairs.

Liability

Covers legal expenses and damages if you're responsible for injuries to other people or their property.

Medical payments

Covers injuries to guests in your home, regardless of fault.

Here's a little bit more about each company and the extras each offers.

Nationwide

Nationwide includes ordinance or law coverage as part of its standard homeowners insurance policy. That means if you need to bring your home up to current building codes as part of a claim, Nationwide pays some or all of the costs. Nationwide also covers up to $500 in unauthorized credit or debit charges as part of its standard policy.

State Farm

State Farm's standard "increased dwelling limit" coverage may appeal to homeowners because of the financial cushion it provides if you need to rebuild your home. As long as the home is insured for the amount State Farm estimates it will cost to replace it, State Farm provides up to an additional 20% of that amount should costs go up while rebuilding.

USAA

If you're an active military member or a veteran, or are a family member of one, USAA offers several benefits that normally cost extra from other insurers. Identity theft coverage and replacement cost for damaged or stolen personal items are just two of the benefits available to policyholders in most states.

Cheapest homeowners insurance rates in North Carolina

NerdWallet looked at the rates from each insurer in all 856 ZIP codes in North Carolina to find the lowest home insurance premiums in the state. We found a statewide average annual premium of $1,812, but your rate may vary depending on where you live. The difference between the cheapest and most expensive rates in North Carolina was over $5,000 per year, with many of the higher premiums coming from the coast.

Here are the five cheapest homeowners insurance rates in North Carolina:

Company

Average annual premium

North Carolina Farm Bureau

$1,310.

Lititz Mutual

$1,407.

Lighthouse Insurance

$1,443.

State Farm

$1,487.

Heritage

$1,507.

And here's a look at all the available rates:

What to know about homeowners insurance in North Carolina

Here are a few things to keep in mind as you evaluate your options for home insurance in North Carolina:

  • You may need separate coverage for any wind damage. Homeowners insurance typically covers damage caused by wind, but in North Carolina you may pay a separate insurance deductible for any wind or hail damage. Depending on where you live, your insurer may decline to provide windstorm coverage as part of your homeowners insurance policy. Should that happen, you can purchase separate windstorm insurance, or if you're rejected by a private insurer, you can usually get coverage from the North Carolina Insurance Underwriting Association.

  • You should consider flood insurance. The National Flood Insurance Program has paid North Carolinians over $600 million to repair and rebuild their homes as a result of the devastation from 2018's Hurricane Florence. Flood damage is not typically covered by homeowners insurance, so you'll likely need a separate flood insurance policy. This is an especially good idea if you live along the coast or in an area prone to flooding.

  • Your rate will vary depending on where you live. North Carolina homeowners insurance tends to be much more expensive along the coast than it does as you move inland. To see the average rate where you live, here's a look at the county-by-county breakdown:

Methodology

NerdWallet averaged rates for 40-year-old men and women from a variety of insurance companies in every ZIP code across the state. Sample homeowners were nonsmokers with good credit living in a single-family, two-story home built in 1983. They had a $1,000 deductible and the following coverage limits:

  • $300,000 in dwelling coverage.

  • $30,000 in other structures coverage.

  • $150,000 in personal property coverage.

  • $60,000 in loss of use coverage.

  • $300,000 in liability coverage.

These are sample rates generated through Quadrant Information Services. Your own rates will be different.

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