Over Five Years, Lightning Sparks More Than $1 Billion in Homeowner Claims



60,000+ policyholders received more than $1 billion in lightning-related homeowner insurance payouts in 2021, with California alone accounting for $522 million, or 40% of the total ($1 billion) paid out to lightning-related claims.


Using data from national insurance claims, the Triple-I discovered:


While the overall value of claims decreased by more than 36% from 2020 to 2021, it grew by more than 43% from 2017 to more than $1.3 billion;


Between 2020 and 2021, the average number of lightning-related homeowner insurance claims in the US decreased by more than 15%, continuing a decline that has been ongoing since 2017 by more than 28%;


Moreover, the average cost per claim decreased by 25% from 2020 (from 28,885 to 21,578), but the five-year trend reveals a double-digit increase to $21,578 from $10,781 in the average cost per claim.



The average cost per claim fluctuates from year to year, but Triple-I highlighted that it has been especially high in the last two years due to lightning fires around the nation.


The fire at the CZU August Complex in California, which was started by lightning, contributed to the disproportionate 2020 insured loss payout number nationally.

At least one person died as a result of the several fires that affected the counties of Santa Cruz and San Mateo.

Due to lighting, a wildfire is now being fought in Alaska’s southwest region.


Lightning can seriously harm phones, phone systems, electrical fixtures, computers, computers, and equipment, in addition to starting devastating fires. It can also seriously harm the electrical foundation of a home.

The subsequent damage could be far worse than the homeowner anticipates.

Price increases for gadgets and appliances are also being caused by supply-chain delays.


Florida, the state with the most thunderstorms, continued to lead the nation in 2021 with 5,339 lightning claims, followed by Texas, Georgia, and California.

The second year that lightning claims started to affect California, the Golden State had the highest average cost per claim with 3,381 claims, coming in at $154,574.