How long does it take to get homeowners insurance?


It can take anywhere from minutes to a few days to buy a homeowners insurance policy. Your homeowners application can take a couple days to process, and your insurer might require a home inspection.

Kara McGinley


Kara McGinley

Kara McGinley

Property and Casualty Insurance Expert

Kara McGinley is an insurance editor at Policygenius, specializing in home, auto, and renters insurance. She's been writing about insurance since 2019, and her work and insights have been referenced in Kiplinger and WRAL.com.

Published May 27, 2020|3 min read

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When purchasing homeowners insurance, you will need to provide your insurer with information about yourself and your home. You can apply for homeowners insurance online, over the phone, or in person at the insurer’s local office and you’ll usually get a quote the same day.

That said, be sure to have details about your home on hand like its build, roof material, and heating type or it could take longer to buy homeowners insurance. Having certain documents like your current policy declarations page and mortgage contract could also help expedite the process.

Buying a home is a big investment, so you want to make sure you are properly insured, which means taking the time to research and shop around to find the best homeowners insurance policy for you and your home.

Key Takeaways

  • You can get a homeowners insurance quote immediately after answering a few questions online, over the phone, or in person

  • It typically takes a day or a few days to get homeowners insurance

  • Familiarize yourself with the basic components of homeowners insurance beforehand to make the application process easier

  • Before purchasing a policy, compare quotes from different home insurance companies to find the best coverage and rates

How long does it take to get a homeowners insurance quote?

Before buying your homeowners insurance policy, you receive a quote which is an estimation of how much your homeowners will cost. Most major homeowners insurance companies provide free and instant quotes online. You can also get quotes over the phone or through an independent broker. It’s important to shop around and compare quotes to find the best and most affordable coverage for your circumstances.

When buying homeowners insurance, one of the most time consuming parts of the whole process is learning the basics about homeowners coverage and determining how much coverage you need.

To ensure a fast application process, make sure you’re ready to provide the following information:

  • Legal name and date of birth

  • Residence address

  • Coverage start date

  • Email address

  • Number of people living in your household full-time

  • How you occupy your home (Is it your main residence? Vacation home?)

  • If you conduct any business at your residence (daycare, home office)

  • How much coverage you need

You should also know the following details about your home:

  • Building details (total square footage, year built, number of stories, age of roof)

  • Safety features (deadbolt locks, fire alarms, sprinkler systems, etc)

  • Additional coverage or endorsements needed (flood or earthquake insurance or water backup coverage)

Learn more about how to shop for homeowners insurance.

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How long does it take for homeowners insurance to go into effect?

After you’ve shopped around and decided on a policy, you’ll go through underwriting before your coverage and rates are finalized. Depending on the property and insurance company, this process can take minutes, hours, or days. If you need proof of insurance in a hurry to close on a mortgage, talk to your insurer about getting it processed as quickly as possible.

Before paying your premium, you’ll be asked to provide a loss payee, payment information, you’ll choose an effective date (when your policy starts), and you’ll finalize certain details like your deductible amount

Once your billing and policy dates are set and your lender approves the policy, your coverage is good to go. Keep in mind that most lenders require you to pay one full year of homeowners insurance premiums upfront, so you should be prepared to make one lump sum payment.

Some insurers may also require a home inspection, however most inspections happen after your policy has already gone into effect. During a home inspection, your home insurance company will send an inspector to your house to make sure everything in your application is accurate. The insurance company may adjust your coverage and rates based on the results of the inspection.

If your lender requires proof of insurance before you can close on your mortgage, you should be able to provide them with an insurance binder or copy of your policy’s declarations page ahead of the closing date.

How to get homeowners insurance fast

The best way to get homeowners insurance fast is to understand the components of a homeowners insurance policy and to have all the documents and information that your insurance company requires. The more information you have ready when you go to buy homeowners insurance, the faster the process will be.

  • Know your residence and property information - You are going to need to provide your insurance company with details about your house to ensure the recommended coverage amounts are accurate. Before getting quotes, know your home’s square footage and home specs, like its foundation type, the style and type of roof, and whether or not the garage is attached to the home or a separate structure.

  • Know how much coverage you need - Homeowners insurance is made up of different types of coverage: dwelling coverage,, other structures coverage personal property coverage, loss-of-use coverage, personal liability coverage, and medical payments coverage. You should take a home inventory of your personal belongings to get an idea of how much personal property protection you need. Shopping around makes it easier to compare coverage and rates.

  • Have the right personal information ready - Make sure you have personal information on hand, like your social security number, insurance claims history, and property history.

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