Home Insurance Policy Pointers for Prospective Buyers in Mobile (Alabama)

24 Jul
Mobile, Alabama Hurricane Strikes

Hurricane Strikes vs. Population for Mobile, Alabama – Source: NOAA Historical Hurricane Tracks Tool (http://csc-s-maps-q.csc.noaa.gov/hurricanes/viewer.html)

Mobile is the third most populous city in Alabama and is an industrial, financial, commercial, and cultural powerhouse of the state. The many jobs at the port, shipping yard, aeronautical complex, retail and technology sectors, and the healthcare industry of Mobile attract people from all over the country to this city.

Many newcomers who choose to settle down here ultimately buy their own piece of real estate property. And while scouting for one, they consider more than just the price. They also look into the approximate insurance premiums they will need to pay. After all, this is one lump sum amount of money that they will have to continue to pay even after they have repaid their debts.

Insurance prices on houses vary across Mobile. These rates also vary across carriers. However, there are some common factors that influence these rates all over the city.

Chances of Weather Damage

Mobile lies in the coastal region of Alabama and according to the Office of Planning, Environment, & Realty, is thus prone to be impacted by storm surges that may last several days, precipitation-induced flooding, strong winds, and lashing waves. These extreme weather events are common during the hurricane season and may cause severe damage to infrastructure.

In fact, with the U.S. Climate Change Science Program predicting that the frequency and intensity of Atlantic hurricanes are likely to increase in the coming years, prospective home buyers in Mobile may consider buying homes that do not lie in areas that are most prone to such damages. For instance, neighborhoods around the Mobile Bay, Three Mile Creek, and Dog River are particularly vulnerable. And naturally, home insurance premiums are higher in these areas compared to other parts of the city. What is more, carriers have even been known to refuse coverage to homeowners in these areas who have not fortified their properties against wind and water damage.

Low-lying neighborhoods near water bodies have the greatest risk of flooding. So homeowners may choose to buy properties in neighborhoods like Spring Hill, lying to the west of downtown Mobile, that has one of the highest elevations in the city—an average of more than 180 feet with some part lying at heights of more than 200 feet. However, this is a popular neighborhood of Mobile and the insurance prices of high-end properties tend to be high. But one many ways to reduce your Alabama homeowners insurance is to buy a home with lower risks of flooding, storm damage and crime.

High-End Properties

Some of the affluent neighborhoods of Mobile include those in the west of the city like Isle of Palms and Charleston Pointe, and pockets like Legacy Lane and Heritage Circle (North). For instance, there are many houses priced at more than $300,000 at Legacy Ln and Heritage Cir N and the monthly mortgage payments on these properties are well above $1,000. In fact, homeowners in these areas pay some of the highest premiums in the city, an average of $3,882.

Potential home buyers, who want to steer clear of high-end properties and thus avoid paying a fortune in their insurance prices, can opt for neighborhoods in west Mobile. There are many reasonably priced properties in areas like Birmingham, Montgomery and Dothan that are ideal for first-time home buyers.

Prospective home buyers in Mobile may be advised to weather-proof their houses no matter what the neighborhood they choose to reside in. This will not only increase their chances of obtaining outstanding discounts on their home insurance premium rates but will also help them avoid costly repairs and/or replacements after a severe weather event.

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