Frequently asked questions about home insurance

Got a hard question? Find easy answers.

Home insurance coverage questions

Condo vs. homeowners insurance: What’s the difference?

Your condo association may cover many of the risks that a homeowner would otherwise need insurance for.

Do I need homeowners insurance?

Legally, you might not need it. But if you have a mortgage, your lender almost definitely requires it.

What’s the difference between DP3 and HO3?

Both DP3 and HO3 can cover your dwelling and other structures on your property. However, a DP3 can cover some risks an HO3 policy can’t.

Does homeowners insurance cover solar panels?

Yes, homeowners insurance covers solar panels – and good thing, too! They’re an investment worth protecting.

How does Kin compare to Citizens?

Get a quote and see for yourself.

How much homeowners insurance do I need?

Find out what limits to choose for each part of your policy.

Why is my replacement cost different than my home’s market value?

The replacement cost of your home may be more than its market value in some situations. Learn how you can make sure you have enough coverage to rebuild your home after a disaster.

What is a roof surfacing payment schedule?

In exchange for a lower premium, the roof surfacing payment schedule endorsement subtracts your roof’s depreciation from your claim settlement for wind or hail damage. Roof depreciation is based on its age and surface materials.

What is trust-owned home insurance?

Trust-owned homes are eligible for coverage from Kin. Get a quote today.

Do I need to change my homeowners insurance if I rent out my house?

Renting out your property means you need dwelling property insurance to make sure you’re properly protected. That’s true for short-term rentals, too.

What is a replacement cost estimate?

Your home’s replacement cost estimate is a calculation of what it would cost to rebuild your home under today’s market conditions.

What’s the difference between DP1 and DP3?

DP1 and DP3 are both dwelling property insurance policies that protect homeowners. However, a DP3 policy provides broader coverage because it insures your dwelling on an open perils basis.

Cost questions

What are the most common home insurance discounts?

Learn about the most common home insurance discounts, from fire and security alarms to lesser known credits, like our very own Responsible Repair Discount.

How to lower home insurance costs

No one wants to pay more for insurance than they have to. Make sure you’re taking advantage of opportunities to save on your coverage.

What impacts my home insurance premium?

These factors can impact how much you pay for home insurance.

Application questions

Do you need an inspection for homeowners insurance?

Inspections are required for some homes, but others can help you reduce your insurance premiums.

What to look for when doing a home inspection

A home inspection formally documents your home’s current condition.

Documents you need to get home insurance

Have this information on hand when you’re ready to buy home insurance.

What is a centrally monitored alarm system?

Find out how to qualify for a security system insurance discount.

What is a LEED-certified home discount?

We offer a 5 percent home insurance discount for LEED-certified homes in California.

How can I tell if I live in a secured community?

A number of communities qualify as secured communities: those with a guard at the gate, a keycard gate, a stationed guard in the area, or a single entry.

What is the Responsible Repair discount?

Kin’s Responsible Repair discount rewards homeowners who decline to hand over their claim benefits to a vendor.

What’s a reciprocal insurance company?

A reciprocal insurance exchange is one way to structure an insurance company. In the reciprocal setup like Kin’s, the carrier is owned by policyholders but managed by a separate entity.

What’s a windstorm mitigation inspection?

A windstorm mitigation inspection shows how wind resistant your home is. It can save you big money on your home insurance.

Policy questions

How do premium refunds work?

We think everything about home insurance should be easy – including refunds.

How does Kin handle the death of a customer?

We can help you figure out next steps, whether that means rewriting the policy or closing it out.

What are installment fees?

An installment fee is a small service charge to cover the cost of processing additional premium payments, usually on a quarterly or monthly basis.

What home insurance fees does Kin charge?

Depending on where you live, you may see the following fees: EMPA, FIGA, installment fees, inspection fees, and surplus contributions.

What is a surplus contribution?

This is a small fee that goes toward maintaining an insurance company’s ability to pay claims.

Claims questions

How are homeowners insurance claims paid?

Find out how homeowners insurance claims are paid and how your coverage and deductible impact your final payout

How do I prevent claims?

Learn how to protect your home and yourself from the five most common home insurance claims.

How long do home insurance claims stay on your record?

Typically claims stay on your CLUE report for five to seven years.

How can I avoid contractor fraud?

Find out how to avoid opportunists after a major disaster.

How to file a home insurance claim

Contact us as soon as you experience a loss you think your policy would cover. You can call us at 866-204-2219 or email

What is the Managed Repair Program?

Our Managed Repair Program connects you with licensed, vetted contractors so you can get covered repairs done quickly and professionally.

What is a catastrophe claim?

Our claims process is designed to help you recover from disasters big and small, whether that’s a hurricane, flood, or wildfire, or a leaky pipe.

What is an insurance loss inspection?

For some claims, we may send a claims specialist to evaluate and inspect your damages. This is called a loss inspection, and it’s a completely typical part of the claims process.

When should I file a home insurance claim

Knowing when to file a home insurance claim can help you use your coverage more strategically – and keep your rates low.

Homeownership questions

What are the tax benefits of owning a home?

Nobody loves tax season, but it’s a yearly reminder that homeownership has its perks.

What are the benefits of homeownership?

Homeownership is the epitome of the American dream, and your home is likely to be the most significant purchase you’ll ever make. If you purchase wisely, the equity growth of your home could lead to financial security.

What is a home inventory?

A home inventory is an up-to-date record of your possessions that can help you get claims settled quickly and accurately.

Start Saving on Your Home Insurance