It may be hard to find a rental house in Southern Oregon, where the latest reported vacancy rate was less than 2.3 percent. But once you've got a place secured, insuring it is relatively reasonable compared to other parts of the state.
A new study released by ValuePenguin listed Ashland (No. 10), Rogue River (No. 11), Grants Pass (No. 15), and Medford (No. 17) among the most reasonably priced locales to purchase renters' insurance in Oregon. The average policy for Rogue Valley renters ranged from $219 to $221 a year, about 5 percent below the state's mean annual rate of $232.
New York-based ValuePenguin compiled renters' insurance quotes from five major carriers for 58 Oregon municipalities. The research firm examined renters' insurance quotes for a 1,000-square-foot residence with at least $25,000 in personal property coverage and $100,000 in liability coverage.
Three of the five least expensive towns — Tigard ($207), Hillsboro ($207) and Beaverton ($208) — are in Washington County.
While not every city was included in the sampling, ValuePenguin research analyst Michael Thrasher said the factors impacting rates came into play whether it was Brookings, Bend or Baker City.
"Some counties have bigger populations, but we made a conscious effort to account for as many counties as we could," Thrasher said.
Portland rates were 17.5 percent higher than the state average at $273 annually. But the other four communities with the highest rates weren't nearly as urban. Stayton ($266) and Canby ($265) were both more than 14 percent higher, while Cottage Grove ($260) was 12 percent higher and Clatskanie ($253) 9 percent above the mean.
The list of factors going into pricing, Thrasher said, included claims history and floodplains.
"Anything that looked totally bizarre we looked at a little closer," he said. "A fire rating can make a big difference. In small cities you might have an independent fire department. They look at the number of firefighters, their age and the number of trucks. It's astounding the detail that goes into the ratings."
ValuePenguin performed an identical study in all 50 states. The gap between the cities with the most expensive rate and the cheapest was 32 percent. In Delaware, everyone was bunched within 7 percent. However, in Texas, the gap between the highest and lowest rates was 74 percent.
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