Lake Tahoe Home Buyer’s Tips: Insurance and FireLine Scores

homes for sale in south lake tahoeWhen buying a home in Lake Tahoe you need to know that there is a high probability of not getting traditional house insurance.  Companies insuring homes in the area look at the FireLine score to determine if a home can be insured or not.

FireLine Scores

The ISO (Insurance Services Office) looks at three things at a property in order to determine a FireLine score:

  1. Is fuel or brush within 1/4 mile of a home?
  2. What is the ability to access the property?
  3. What is the slope the home is built on?4

Scores are given to each category and a property ends up with a score between 0 – 30.  The higher the score, the higher probability a home has for being lost in a wildfire.  Lake Tahoe is considered a high fire risk area so these scores are used when issuing insurance policies.

I’ve seen an insurance company start to turn down clients that have scores above a 3!

Home Insurance

If you have a higher FireLine score you’ll still be able to find insurance, it just may not be through the traditional companies and it will cost you more money.

Lake Tahoe is a beautiful place to own a home.  There will always be a fire risk though, because of the forests surrounding the community. It’s part of life in the mountains.  If you have any questions about where to buy a home in Lake Tahoe, contact me by email or phone at 530-541-2465.