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We Provide Earthquake Insurance for Californians

Rates & Premiums

​CEA is committed to offering California homeowners competitive rates

  • CEA has reduced average statewide earthquake-insurance rates by nearly 55% since we opened our doors in 1996.
  • CEA now offers a premium discount of up to 20%—the "Hazard Reduction Discount"—to eligible policyholders who have strengthened, or "seismically retrofitted," their older houses to better resist earthquake shaking.
  • CEA rates are based on science, not profit. We use the best science ​available to determine competitive earthquake insurance rates.
  • We are not-for-profit, publicly managed, and privately funded. Our Governing Board of elected state officials ensures our rates are as low as possible while CEA remains fiscally sound.

Frequently asked questions about rates and premiums

Q: How much does a CEA policy cost?

A: The minimum annual premium for a CEA standard Homeowners or Homeowners Choice policy is $100. Various rating factors determine your policyholder's premium, such as:

  • Degree of earthquake risk where they live
  • Insured value of the house
  • The house's number of stories, age, and foundation and construction type
  • The policy coverages, limits and deductibles they choose
  • Whether or not the insured dwelling has been seismically retrofitted, per defined building code standards, and qualifies for the Hazard Reduction Discount

Use our Premium Calculator to get a policy estimate for your customer.

Q: Are homeowners eligible for a retrofit discount?

A: Yes. CEA policyholders who have retrofitted homes to help reduce earthquake damage will receive a 5 percent premium discount if their homes meet the following requirements:

  • Built before 1979.
  • Wood-frame construction-type.
  • Built on a raised foundation.
  • Frame is bolted to the foundation.
  • Home has cripple walls, and they are braced with plywood or its equivalent.
  • Water heater is secured to the building frame.
  • Homes built on a concrete-slab or combination-type foundation do not qualify.
Q: How does CEA’s deductible work?

A: Policyholders do not have to write a check to the CEA before they receive payment on a covered claim. The deductible amount is subtracted from the covered loss, and the CEA pays the policyholder the difference—most claim payments, and all claim handling, is done by the CEA participating insurance company.

Q: Is CEA financially sound?

A: Yes. CEA has a claim-paying capacity of more than $13 billion. That means, even if the 1906 San Francisco earthquake or 1994 Northridge earthquake struck again, CEA would be able to pay all its claims. Plus:

  • CEA has an A– (Excellent) rating from A.M. Best Co.
  • CEA is privately funded and receives no money from California’s state budget—a state budget deficit or delay has no impact on our ability to pay claims.

Does your client have a CEA earthquake policy with a start date in 2015? Learn more about their policy.