Toronto Home insurance
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Toronto home insurance summary
- How home insurance works in Toronto
- How to get the cheapest home insurance quotes in Toronto
- How does home insurance in Toronto compare to Greater Toronto Area?
- Factors that determine your Toronto home insurance premium
- Top Toronto home insurance companies
- Frequently asked questions about Toronto home insurance
How Toronto home insurance works
Home insurance is not mandatory anywhere in Canada, but many lenders will only mortgage a home that’s insured. Coverage has many additional benefits, including protection for the home’s contents as well as liability protection if someone is injured while visiting the property – or, if the homeowner unintentionally causes damage to someone else’s property.
Those looking for home insurance quotes in Toronto should first consider what protection a policy offers. Regardless of policy type most cover the following:
- Contents: Protects the homeowner’s belongings if they’re damaged by a covered peril. Expensive items such as specialty sports equipment, jewelry, fine art or a wine collection may require additional protection in the form of a ‘rider’ that’s added to the policy.
- Property: Protects the home and surrounding buildings such as the garage if they’re damaged by a covered peril.
- Liability: Protects the homeowner if they’re sued by someone who is injured while visiting the home; also, protects the homeowner if they unintentionally damage someone else’s property.
- Additional living expenses: Provides coverage for expenses the homeowner assumes after being forced to leave the home due to a covered peril. For example, covers the cost of a hotel stay and food while away from the home.
Home insurance policy types
Next, we encourage Toronto homeowners to consider how providers structure insurance policies. There are generally three types of home insurance policies:
- Basic: Sometimes referred to as a ‘named perils’ policy because it offers protection against perils that are named in the policy. This is the most minimal coverage available.
- Broad: Also known as a ‘standard’ policy, insures the home against all risks and insures personal property against named perils.
- Comprehensive: Often called ‘all perils’ policy because it protects the home and its contents against all perils except any named as exclusions.
Since no single policy provides coverage for every peril, many homeowners prefer to add coverage for more protection than policies provide out-of-the-box. These are considered optional coverage, ‘add ons’. They may also sometimes be called ‘endorsements.’ Some of the most popular include:
- Earthquake: Covers the home and its contents following damage from earth movement. An earthquake endorsement also provides protection against damage from landslide, snowslide and volcanic eruption - none of which are relevant to Toronto homeowners.
- Home-based business: Enhances the property limits and perils that are covered in a policy so that the homeowner with a home-based business can have adequate property and liability coverage. In instances where only a computer needs to be protected, a computer floater can be added to the policy.
- Identity theft: Covers the cost of replacing stolen personal documents such as a driver's licence and passport. May also cover wages lost while away from work to replace documents.
- Overland water: Covers the cost of damage from water that overflows from a nearby waterway such as a lake or river. Insurance providers distinguish different types of flooding – one of which is overland flood.
- Sewer back-up: Protects the home against damage from water that enters the home through an overflowing drain or toilet. Many Toronto homeowners may have experienced this type of flooding in 2013 and again in 2022. In the first instance, a powerful rainstorm caused about $1 billion million in insured damage in Toronto, according to the Insurance Bureau of Canada. More recently, in 2022, a thunderstorm produced 72 mm of rain over Toronto, with 51 mm falling in just one hour causing more than $875 million in insured damage. The storm system, which meteorologists refer to as a ‘derecho’, ranked as the sixth largest event in Canadian history for insured losses.
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How does home insurance in Toronto compare to Greater Toronto Area?
|Estimated annual premium
|% Difference compared to Toronto
|Toronto's average home insurance premium
|Ontario's average home insurance premium
Factors that determine your Toronto home insurance premium
Providers consider many factors when determining a rate for homes in Toronto. In general, they’re trying to figure out how likely it is that a policy holder will file a claim. To do so, they look at details of the home as well as the homeowner:
- Distance from fire hydrant: Homes located at a distance from a fire hydrant tend to cost more to insure because insurance providers consider them more likely to be consumed in the event of a fire.
- Roof age: Homes with older roofs may pay more for coverage while those with newer roofs may be eligible for a discount.
- Security: Homes located in a neighborhood with a high crime rate will result in a higher premium. When homeowners take reasonable steps to mitigate risks to their home by installing security alarms (as well as smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors) they may receive a discount.
- Size and condition of home: Homeowners will pay more for home insurance coverage in Toronto when they have larger homes. Other factors about the home that insurance providers look at include the condition of the home’s plumbing, electrical and heating systems as well as the home’s overall quality of construction.
- Claims history: Insurance providers consider the policy holder’s claims history to be an indication of their future behaviour. Those with a history of making claims may pay more for coverage in the future.
- Credit scores: In Ontario, homeowners can use a favourable credit score to receive a lower insurance premium. They must consent to the credit check. By law, a bad credit score cannot be used to increase the premium.
- Pets: Homeowners with exotic or banned pets may pay more for coverage. For example, some dog breeds known for violent behaviour may trigger an insurance provider to suggest that the homeowner requires additional liability protection in case the dog bites someone or damages property.
Top Toronto home insurance companies
|Type of Company
|10 Aviva Way, Suite 100, Markham, ON, L6G 0G1
|60 Commerce Valley Dr E., Thornhill, ON, L3T 7P9
|165 University Ave., Toronto, ON M5H 3B9
|10 Four Seasons Place, Suite 200, Toronto, ON, M9B 6H7
|2680 Matheson Blvd E. Ste 300, Mississauga, ON, L4W 0A5
|111 Westmount Road South, P.O. Box 2000, Waterloo, Ontario N2J 4S4
|1910 Yonge St. Suite 401, Toronto, ON M4S 3B
|111 Westmount Rd. S., P.O. Box 2000, Waterloo, ON, N2J 4S4
|360 Adelaide St. W Suite 100, Toronto, ON M5V 1R7
|700 University Ave., Suite 1500A, Toronto, ON, M5G 0A1
|300 Lincoln St. Unit 22, Welland, ON L3B 4N4
|439 University Ave. #500, Toronto, ON M5G 1Y8
|700 University Ave., Suite 1500A, Toronto, ON, M5G 0A1
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Frequently asked questions about Toronto home insurance
How can I find the cheapest home insurance quote in Toronto?
The easiest way to find the cheapest home insurance in Toronto is to compare available rates. Our online tool takes less than three minutes, is free and will provide Toronto home insurance quotes from dozens of the most-trusted insurance providers in the country.
In addition to comparison shopping, homeowners can reduce their insurance costs by bundling their policies, agreeing to a credit check and increasing their deductible. Other savings tactics include paying upfront for the full-year policy term, mitigating risk by installing alarms (security, fire and carbon monoxide detectors). It’s also important to tailor a policy to make sure that it includes the coverage they need and nothing more.
How much is home insurance in Toronto?
According to RATESDOTCA’s Home Insuramap tool, the average cost of home insurance in Toronto (city proper) in 2021 was $1,467. This is about 3% more expensive than the provincial average in the same year of $1,427.
Homes based in neighbourhoods that are prone to flooding may have higher premiums. We strongly recommend that every homeowner in Toronto add flood protection coverage to their policies. While it will increase the cost, the advantages of having protection in the event of a claim outweigh the advantage of a lower premium.
What kind of risks do Toronto homeowners face?
We encourage homeowners in Toronto to add overland water protection to their home insurance policies to protect against damage from severe weather. In the past decade, Toronto has been affected by rainstorms that cause millions of dollars in insured damage and those without adequate protection must pay out-of-pocket for the damage. Noteworthy floods include one in 2013 and 2022. The each caused about $1 billion and $875 million in insured damage respectively, according to the Insurance Bureau of Canada.
Flooding is named as an exclusion in most home insurance policies. This means policyholders must add it to be covered for damage from a flood. While some providers offer water protection packages that include multiple forms of flood protection, we encourage homeowners to make certain that they’ve secure protection against overland flood as well as sewer back-up.
Earthquake is also an exclusion on most policies. Though earthquakes are not common in Toronto, we recommend that homeowners consider adding coverage to their policies. The city has been affected by earthquake. In 2010, a 5.0 magnitude quake struck the Ottawa region and was felt in Toronto as well.
Do I need to update my Toronto home insurance provider if I am running a short-term rental on Airbnb or Vrbo?
Yes, we recommend that any homeowner in Toronto who is renting out a portion of their home – on either a short- or long-term basis – inform their insurance provider to avoid having a claim denied. In addition, landlords may consider different coverage and limits than are provided by standard homeowner policies.
How can I file a home insurance claim in Toronto?
To file a claim when the home and its contents are damaged or stolen – or, if the homeowner unintentionally damages someone else’s property - they should immediately contact their home insurance provider.
It’s also wise for homeowners to have an up-to-date inventory of their belongings. This will make the claims process easier and eliminate potential debate during the claims process about the value and condition of the home and its contents.