Get the facts on what your Homeowners Insurance Policy covers
A person’s home is easily one of the most important and valuable things that he or she owns. Naturally, people want to protect their home as much as they possibly can, and they rely on homeowner’s insurance to help them with this. Most people do not really understand their policy though, and they believe that it simply covers anything that could possibly happen to their home. Those homeowners are woefully misinformed, and it’s important that they have a better idea of exactly what they should expect and what the policy actually covers. First, let’s look at the importance of having a quality insurance policy for the home. Later in the article, we’ll look at some of the gaps in most of these policies.
Why Is Homeowner’s Insurance Important?
As mentioned, your home is a huge investment, so you want to make sure that you keep it safe. In fact, before you fund your mortgage or refinance a mortgage, the lender will require proof that you have coverage. They have a big financial stake in your home, and they want to make sure that they are covered, which means you need to have coverage for the property.
Additionally, having a policy means that you have peace of mind when it comes to your home, and that’s easily one of the most important benefits. It has the ability to pay for many different types of damage to your home, as well as the destruction and / or theft of belongings in many cases. It gives you that extra cushion that you might need. However, the policies are not perfect, and they do not cover your home for everything, and it is important that you understand these holes in the coverage.
What Are the Biggest Gaps In Insurance Policies?
What are some of the items and elements that homeowner’s insurance policies will not cover? Some of them might actually be surprising. The uncovered items will fall into property exclusions and liability exclusions. We’ll look at the property exclusions first.
The collapse of the home is not covered, unless collapse is discussed specifically in the policy, generally under the additional coverage section. If the heat has not been properly maintained in the building, the policy will not cover freezing of plumbing or the AC and heating systems. If foundations; retaining walls; or other non-building structures, such as pools, are damaged due to freezing, the policy will not cover those either. Of course, freezing is not very likely in Florida. Still, it’s important to know what the policy has to say about these exclusions.
If the building is still under construction, then the policy will not cover theft. This exclusion actually lasts until the building is finished. If a building has been vacant for at least 30 days before any malicious mischief or vandalism occurs, the policy will not cover the damages. If damage or defects in the sump, roof drain, or other items cause fungus, mold, or wet rot, the policy will not provide coverage.
One of the things that take many people by surprise is the fact that the insurance policy will not cover floods. Buyers need to purchase a separate policy that covers damage stemming from a flood. Some buyers might be thinking that they don’t need to have one of these policies, especially if they aren’t in an area prone to flooding. However, it is actually still a very good idea to have this type of coverage. Think about rain, hurricanes, and other potential damage that could happen to the home. Many people don’t realize that their policy doesn’t cover floods, and there are some insurance companies out there that neglect to mention this for some reason. You will generally be able to get a policy for flood insurance right through the same insurer.
In addition, the policy doesn’t cover loss from the enforcement of law relating to repair, demolition, or construction. It doesn’t offer coverage from earthquakes or landslides, or from water damage caused by something like a backed-up sewer.
In addition, there are exclusions to certain liabilities in many policies. Some of the most prominent examples include exclusions from expected or intended injury or damage. For example, if someone purposefully hurts someone on the property, the homeowner’s insurance will not be liable for those damages. Additionally, there is not coverage from liabilities that stem from renting part of the property to another person. If there are any locations on the property that are not listed as being covered, such as an outbuilding, then the policy will not cover it. There is no liability coverage from communicable diseases, abuse, or war either.
Those who are running a home daycare will also find that they do not have coverage for the activities of the business, even though it takes place in the home. Those who are running those types of businesses will need to have separate coverage that will help to provide them with the liability protection they need.
While many of these are things that the average homeowner will not likely need to worry about, it is still important to know exactly what the policy does and does not cover.
What Should Buyers and Sellers of Insurance Do?
Honesty is important when it comes to talking with owners about policies, and the sellers need to make sure that the buyer understands everything that the policy covers, as well as those things it does not cover. Buyers need to be inquisitive and not simply sign the first policy that they see. The buyers should never assume that the policy covers something without getting confirmation from their insurance provider. Sellers of insurance need to be transparent when it comes to explaining to the buyer everything the policy covers and that which is does not cover.
Buyers should always take the time to look at the different options they have available when it comes to insurance policies when they are buying their homes, as well as when they are looking to change providers. Take the time to see what the different companies are able to offer, and choose the one that can provide you with the most coverage and that still offers a good price.
Often, such as in the case of flood insurance, you can find additions to the policy that may be able to provide your home with a bit more coverage, and therefore some more peace of mind. Naturally, these additional policies and coverage will cost more, but it is something that many homeowners will want to consider. After all, your home is a huge investment and you need to have the very best possible protection for it.
At Avante Insurance we are always standing by to help you determine the best insurance solutions to fit your needs. Our experience and expertise allows us to listen to what is important to you in your business and personal environment so we can provide you with the right insurance at the best cost. We speak your language so you are empowered about your choices.
Benefits of Working With An Independent Insurance Agency:
Avante is an independent insurance agency which means we are not obligated to sell one type or one brand of insurance. We partner with financially sound, reputable Insurance Companies with impeccable ratings. Contact us for additional information to make sure you are properly covered.