What do I need for my tiny house insurance in Michigan?

Tiny house insurance in Michigan is required for construction, towing, and parked tiny homes. Obtain RVIA certification to qualify for RV and auto insurance and receive damage, liability, and contents coverage.

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Zaneta Wood, Ed.S. has over 15 years of experience in research and technical writing bringing a keen understanding of data analysis and information synthesis to reach a wide variety of audiences. She studied adult education and instructional technology at Appalachian State University as well as technical and professional communication at East Carolina University. Zaneta has prepared technical p...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP®

UPDATED: Sep 15, 2020

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Here's what you need to know...

  • Tiny houses are one of the few types of properties that you can hitch to a truck and drive to a new location
  • If you want to live off the grid in Michigan, you can build a tiny house for between $19,000 and $50,000
  • It’s critical that you have insurance for the tiny house when you build it and then after it is constructed
  • If the tiny house is being constructed by a certified RV manufacturer, getting insurance is very easy
  • Once the construction is finished, you will need an RV insurance policy as soon as the tiny house is hitched to a trailer

If you want to live off the grid or you simply want to enjoy more freedom when it comes to changing your scenery, the tiny house may be for you.

With advances in manufacturing, you can enjoy all of the conveniences of a big home and the portability of a manufactured home but in a much smaller package.

So many people are intrigued by the concept in Michigan that there has been what some call a Tiny House Movement.

Tiny home builds in Michigan and throughout the US are on the rise, it’s imperative that current a future tiny homeowners are familiar with how they should stay protected. As much as you’d like to stay off of the grid, rejecting insurance coverage is not an option.

Since tiny homes are very unique, you may face some newer challenging as you’re trying to secure coverage. Make sure to use our free quote tool above today! 

Here’s what you need to know about buying property insurance for tiny homes in Michigan:

Insuring Your Tiny House on Wheels in Michigan

You’re not technically required by law to carry insurance on a dwelling that you live in. Your lender may require you to insure the home but the state makes purchasing property insurance on a residence optional. The only exception to this rule is why you live in a home on wheels.

In the state of Michigan, if you live in an RV or a similar type of home, you must insure your home just like you would insure a vehicle. 

Since the Department of Insurance and Financial Services is in charge of enforcing mandatory insurance laws, you must comply by purchasing the no-fault insurance that’s required even if it’s an RV.

Since a tiny home is a lot like an RV, you must familiarize yourself with the law. What makes buying insurance for a tiny home so challenging is that there are so many different phases to consider.

You may not legally have to buy insurance while it’s being built, but it’s wise to invest in the protection. You need to know about insuring your tiny house during different stages.

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Coverage during Construction

There are two different ways to build a tiny house. If you’re a skilled contractor, you can invest in the materials and take it on as a do-it-yourself project.

If you’re not-so-skilled, it’s best to hire a professional builder in Michigan to do the job for you. How you’ll go about insuring your tiny home during construction depends on which method you choose.

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DIY Construction

If you’re building your own tiny home, you’ll need to invest in insurance on the materials that you’ll be using to complete the blueprints.

Just like with any home, you can buy construction insurance on the materials so they are covered if stolen or destroyed. Some policies will protect you from hazards well if you’re liable for injuries to others.

Since a tiny home is no different than a dwelling during the construction phase, any company that sells construction insurance should be willing to take on the risk.

There are even specialty property insurers in Michigan that sell insurance specifically for tiny homes during construction.

Before you apply for insurance for the off-grid tiny home that you’re building, before sure that you meet the minimum insurance requirements. You will need to have a licensed electrician document and certify at least the electrical work.

You should also consider applying for a NOAH certification so that you can prove that your tiny house on wheels is both safe and energy efficient.

Professional Builds

Insurance won’t be a hassle if you’re buying a build from an RVIA certified manufacturer or if you’re hiring a professional builder to do the work for you.

While the unit is being built, even if you design the actual look of the micro home yourself, the builder will handle the insurance for you. Going this route may be more expensive, but it’s an option that ensures you’ll easily be able to buy RV insurance in the future.

Coverage while Parked in Michigan

If you’re going to find the perfect park or buy land in Michigan, you can find a tiny home insurance policy in Michigan to protect you just like any other traditional homeowner in the state.

The only difference between a specialty policy and a home insurance policy is that theft of the tiny home is not covered. Theft of your belongings, however, is covered by tiny home insurance.

In addition to tiny home insurance, you could look for a manufactured home insurance policy as long as the tiny home will be parked in a model home park.

Since it meets the definition of a manufactured home, you’ll be eligible for coverage just like you had a single-wide or double-wide. These policies offer more protection and more coverage options.

Coverage while Towing

One of the great things about a tiny home on wheels is that it can be transported from one neighborhood to another. That means you never have to list your home for sale if you want new scenery.

When the tiny home is in tow, it does create a unique risk that could complicate how your insurance works. Once your home is hitched, it will need special coverage.

If you have an RVIA certified tiny home, finding quality insurance is definitely easier. All you’ll need is an RV policy to cover the structure of your home and your belongings and a separate auto insurance policy for the vehicle that is towing the home.

The liability insurance will extend from your Michigan auto insurance policy. The RV policy will pay for the following:

  • damage to the tiny home
  • contents
  • some liability

If you have a non-certified tiny home, there are a few options:

  • You can buy a standard auto insurance policy with a special trip endorsement much like you would get for extended trips towing an RV.
  • You can also purchase an inland marine policy for the tiny home on wheels.
  • Renters’ insurance will be needed to protect your personal belongings.

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Comparing Rates to Save on Tiny Home Coverage

No matter which option you choose, it’s vital that you compare insurance rates. The cost of auto insurance in Michigan can vary dramatically from company to company.

If you’re going to be towing your tiny house on wheels, make sure you have comprehensive insurance and sufficient auto insurance limits. Compare insurance quotes online with our free quote tool and then structure your home insurance.

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