Over the past decade, the desire for a simpler existence has become a popular lifestyle. Off-grid living in many forms is now the goal for many families. Each living situation in the off-grid style is different. However, living off the grid essentially means that you are leaving behind much of the technology that aids in daily life, like grid-provided electricity, water, and sewer services.
People looking to live a more sustainable and eco-friendly lifestyle are moving off the grid in record numbers. It begins with the purchase of land, building an eco-conscious home, and creating your electricity and utilities. This type of lifestyle can be both rewarding and challenging.
Although living off-grid comes from the desire to separate from many of the modern facets of life, there are still elements that need to be secured, like home insurance. Let’s take a look at how homeowners insurance works for off-grid homes and what the challenges are in obtaining the protection that you need.
How Off-Grid Home Insurance Works
Getting home insurance for your off-grid property could be a challenge. When leaving behind many of the modern conveniences of home ownership, you may also be putting yourself at higher risk for property damage.
Many off-grid homes are reliant on wood-burning stoves or fireplaces for their heat rather than a modern furnace. Although convenient and reliable, this type of heating also carries a higher risk of a fire starting in your home. Many off-grid homes are located in remote regions, making it harder for fire rescue teams to help if there is an emergency, resulting in more severe damage.
Before you start building your off-grid home, it’s a good idea to speak to your insurance agent. They will be able to give you a list of restrictions to follow so you can improve your chances of getting the right coverage for your home.
Choosing to leave the electrical grid behind means that you will need to find an electricity source on your own. Many off-grid homes are reliant on solar power collected on panels. If you plan to have solar power for your off-grid home, make sure that you have a professional do the installation and wiring. Your insurance broker will want to see that your system is done properly and correctly certified.
If you are relying on wood-burning for your heat, you will need to take every precaution to make sure that it is safe. Having your stove or fireplace professionally installed is a wise move. Make sure to install proper ventilation, heat shield protection, and proper fire fighting equipment like multiple extinguishers onsite.
How to Lower the Cost of Off-Grid Insurance
Qualifying for homeowner’s insurance with your off-grid property can be a challenge, but it’s possible to reduce your rates with these strategies:
- If your off-grid property is only being used recreationally, you could rent it out when you are away. Locations that are rented out regularly could qualify for different insurance coverage that is easier to obtain.
- Sharing your off-grid property with multiple owners makes it easier to ensure that your broker knows that there is always someone onsite to ensure safety.
- Make improvements to your off-grid home to ensure safety by listing close neighbors that are available in an emergency, proximity to rescue teams, security systems installed, and fire prevention.
The off-grid lifestyle can be fulfilling and rewarding. Making the right moves as you get settled is the best way to ensure that you will qualify for a homeowner’s insurance policy that will keep you and your dreams protected.