Do you need hurricane insurance in Texas?

You need to have the right insurance to protect your home from hurricanes. Your lender will require that you carry homeowners insurance, and in some cases will also require flood and windstorm coverage.

It’s not required by Texas law, but lenders that provide federally-backed mortgages in designated high-risk flood areas must require homeowners to carry flood insurance, according to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Lenders may also require windstorm insurance, particularly in coastal areas of Texas.

“In Texas, if you live in a Tier 1 county — that is a county that touches the Gulf of Mexico like Galveston or Brazoria — your mortgage company will require you to carry windstorm and flood insurance policies in addition to your homeowners,” says Hal Rochkind, owner and agent with Rochkind Insurance, based in Galveston.

“Homeowners insurance in Tier 1 counties exclude windstorm and flood from their policies, so you will have three separate policies for your home” if you want full coverage hurricane insurance, he says.

Elsewhere in the state, however, you would likely just need to add flood insurance to a homeowners insurance policy that includes windstorm coverage.

How much does hurricane insurance cost in Texas?

The cost of hurricane insurance in Texas depends on how exactly you construct that coverage, considering that it involves a combination of policies. One way to look at it is to add up the cost of home insurance in Texas with windstorm coverage, as well as a flood insurance policy. In that regard, the average cost of hurricane insurance in Texas is $4,840, considering that:

a) The average home insurance policy in Texas costs $4,142 based on the following limits:

  • $300,000 dwelling coverage
  • $1,000 deductible
  • $300,000 liability
  • 2% hurricane deductible

b) The average cost of flood insurance in Texas is $698 for a policy through the National Flood Insurance Program.

If you need a separate windstorm insurance policy, such as through the state-run Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA), the average cost is around $2,000. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that Texans who buy windstorm insurance always pay more than those who have homeowners insurance with windstorm coverage. 

“It's all relative,” says Rochkind. “Identical houses in Galveston and Houston will have similar premiums for the Galveston homeowners and windstorm policies versus just the Houston homeowners, which includes windstorm.”

In other words, a house in Galveston could have lower homeowners insurance premiums since windstorm coverage is not included, but when you add the policies together, the total costs are similar. 

That said, “the Galveston policy premiums may be a tad higher because you're paying a premium to live on the coast, where you are more likely to have a damaging wind event,” Rochkind says.

How much is a hurricane deductible?

The average hurricane deductible for a homeowners insurance policy with windstorm coverage is 2% of the dwelling coverage. That means that if you have $300,000 in dwelling coverage, you would have to meet a $6,000 deductible for hurricane or other windstorm damage, separate from your regular deductible for things like fire and theft.
For a windstorm insurance policy through the TWIA, homeowners typically choose deductibles of 1% or 2%.
Flood insurance deductibles use dollar amounts rather than percentages, which range from $1,000 to $10,000. However, these policies have separate deductibles for dwelling coverage and contents coverage, so if your home’s structure and personal property are damaged in a flood, you may need to pay both deductibles.

How does hurricane insurance work in Texas?

Hurricane insurance doesn’t operate as a standalone policy, but you can insure yourself against hurricane damage through a combination of either:

  1. Homeowners insurance with windstorm coverage (with a separate deductible for windstorm-related claims), as well as flood insurance.
  2. Homeowners insurance without windstorm coverage, a separate windstorm insurance policy, and flood insurance.

With either option, you can protect yourself financially against wind damage as well as flooding from hurricanes and other storms. Note that you may have to pay separate deductibles for the same storm, depending on how your policies are constructed.

For example, you may have to pay a 2% deductible for your homeowner's insurance to cover damage to your home’s walls or roof due to a hurricane while also paying a $2,000 deductible for your flood insurance to cover damage to your floors in a hurricane-induced flood, as well as another $2,000 deductible for damage to your personal belongings.

Is hurricane insurance a requirement in Texas?

Neither homeowners, windstorm, nor flood insurance is required by Texas law, but lenders often require you to at least carry homeowners insurance. Depending on your location, lenders may also require windstorm and flood insurance.

In particular, Texas homeowners who live near the coast likely need to buy windstorm insurance. And if you live in a FEMA-designated high-risk flood area with a federally backed mortgage, your lender also has to require you to buy flood insurance

Texas hurricane insurance companies

To insure yourself against hurricanes in Texas, the following is a list of some of the best home insurance providers in Texas that offer home insurance policies, windstorm insurance policies (or include windstorm coverage with homeowners), and flood insurance policies, or at least help facilitate coverage across these areas.

Ultimately, finding the best hurricane insurance in Texas depends on how you want to go about constructing coverage. You might find getting all your coverage through one provider works best, or you might prefer to use one provider for homeowners insurance that includes windstorm coverage while choosing a separate flood insurance provider.

To see what works best for you, start by getting quotes for both homeowners insurance and flood insurance and then see if you need to or would benefit from getting a separate windstorm insurance policy.