Earthquake insurance can make a difference for the "Big One"

Earthquake insurance is one step to being prepared for the "big one" (Marissa Olid/News 10).

Last week's earthquake in Ridgecrest, California was the strongest earthquake California has felt in 20 years. One earthquake occurred on Fourth of July with a magnitude of 6.4, followed by another earthquake the following day with a magnitude of 7.1.

Earthquakes with a smaller magnitude often times do not cause significant damage, but an earthquake with a larger magnitude can leave homeowners displaced.

Similar to having home and car insurance, earthquake insurance is something to consider. Unlike home and car insurance, earthquake insurance is not required for homeowners however, it may be beneficial and end up saving you money in the long run.

Earthquake insurance is not included in home owners insurance and requires speaking to an insurance agent to figure out your needs.

"You have to specifically tell the insurance company that I want earthquake on my homeowners. You pay more premium for that and quite often it has a separate deductible, a larger separate deductible," said Rory Wold, a State Farm agent.

Earthquake insurance is based on the value and sometimes age of the home. The purpose is to replace one's home, cover all contents inside, as well as loss of use or additional living expenses while the home gets fixed.

"Have them cover what it covers and what it does not cover, and what that cost of the deductible would be," said Wold.

Most insurance agents have a software to determine how much it would cost to rebuild a damaged home in case of an emergency. If the face value is not enough to help cover everything inside the home, homeowners would have to pay money out of pocket or take out a loan.

Although having homeowners insurance is a step in the right direction to be prepared, Wold recommends creating a plan and taking a picture or video of all your belongings inside the home.

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