Earthquake Insurance In Charleston, SC May Be More Important Than Ever

Posted: April 24, 2018

Did you know that South Carolinians spent $41 million on earthquake insurance in 2016? The U.S. Geological Survey says that another earthquake comparable to the one that hit Charleston in 1886 is on the horizon, and it could easily cause billions of dollars’ worth of damage. With new reports suggesting cause for concern, it may be worthwhile to explore the possibility of getting earthquake insurance for the properties you own. Learn more about earthquake insurance, and get a quote today!


Risk Of Major Earthquake In South Carolina

Experts determine which areas are vulnerable to earthquakes by seismic faults that lie beneath the earth. Recent warnings combined with actual earthquakes in South Carolina have reignited the public’s concern over this threat. With reasonable accuracy, the US Geological Survey predicts that a major earthquake will hit South Carolina within the next 50 years.

An Earthquake Devastated Charleston In 1886

Charleston is no stranger to devastating earthquakes. The most significant one hit the city in 1886 and caused remarkable damage. The 7.6 earthquake that took place in South Carolina was the worst the state had ever seen. The damage was estimated at $5.5 million at the time, which would equal approximately $112 million adjusted for today’s standard. To give an idea of the devastation, over 14,000 chimneys were destroyed as a result of the earthquake, and virtually every building in Charleston was damaged. It’s hard to imagine such a powerful earthquake ripping though South Carolina today, but one thing is certain—if it does, those who have earthquake insurance can be protected from a potentially massive financial burden.

What Could An Earthquake Do To Buildings In South Carolina?

Earthquakes cause damage in three primary ways. First, by shaking the earth, they cause significant damage to buildings, gas lines, and water pipes in addition to other structures. Second, the landslides earthquake creates can ruin farm land, cover properties, and result in expensive and life-threatening damage to the community. Finally, by liquefying the earth, anything on top will sink below the surface, including cars and houses.

Why Consider Earthquake Insurance?

Experts estimate a 40-63 percent chance that a major earthquake will hit the East Coast within the next ten years. One way you can protect the properties you own from the next big one is to purchase earthquake insurance. While auto insurance typically includes earthquake coverage, home insurance doesn’t—so it must be added on as supplemental coverage. Ultimately, the decision to add earthquake coverage is a big one that can potentially save you massive amounts of stress and money if an earthquake does occur.

What Exactly Is Covered?

Earthquake insurance will cover your damaged belongings and property up to the policy limit. The most likely and devastating damage that could occur to your home is structural collapse from the shaking effect of an earthquake. Note that even if you’re covered against fire damage, there is still earthquake-specific damage that could take its toll on your home. That’s where your earthquake insurance will come into play.

What About The Cost?

Many factors will affect the cost of earthquake insurance. These include location, structural condition of your home, and the age of the properties you wish to cover. Whatever your estimate ends up being, it’s important to also note that earthquake insurance often requires a deductible ranging from 2-20 percent of the total cost. This means that you may still have some expenditures to pay even with earthquake insurance, but they won’t be as financially draining as if you’ve never had it.

Important Concerns Involving Earthquake Insurance

Purchasing any type of insurance is a big decision, since having it adds costs to your bills—but not having it can be exponentially more devastating. Obviously the biggest factor to consider in buying earthquake insurance is how big the risk is that there will be an earthquake in your lifetime. While small earthquakes have hit South Carolina recently, it’s important to consider whether the risk of a large-scale, devastating earthquake like the one that took place in 1886 is likely to occur within your lifetime.

Trust King Street Agency With Your Coverage

At King Street Agency, we provide all of the types of insurance that matter to those who reside in the Carolinas. South Carolina is a state that has experienced earthquakes, from small to enormous, and the threat of another big one is real. Luckily, you can insure your home and property giving yourself financial peace of mind for when the next big one hits your area.

Request a quote today, and don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions you may have.