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If I own a house, am I required to buy homeowner's insurance?

UPDATED: February 24, 2015

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Unlike automobile insurance, there usually is no law that requires a homeowner to have insurance. However, if you borrow money to buy a house, the bank or loan company will take a "mortgage" or "deed of trust" to protect its interest until the loan is repaid. The mortgage or deed of trust will require that you have an adequate amount of insurance to cover the repair or rebuilding of the house in the event it is damaged. Normally you will be required to name the mortgage company as a "loss payee" on your policy, which means that if the house is damaged, the insurance payment will go to the loan company, or jointly to both you and the loan company, to assure that the money is used to rebuild or repair the house or, if you choose not to rebuild, to pay off the loan.

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