The first time you purchase home insurance comes at the joyful moment when you close on a house. But with all the other obligations around getting a home, insurance normally isn't the biggest priority. Most people rush through getting a policy so that they can focus on completing all the other paperwork waiting for them. Instead of reading through the policy, people might just assume their home insurance will cover everything relating to their new home. And since banks require an insurance policy before providing a loan, this gives a false sense of confidence in homeowners insurance. However, there are several things which are typically not covered in a home policy. Check your policy to make sure the following items are covered.
Some people love dogs, others don't, and insurance companies are in the middle. Your homeowners policy will protect against possible damage your dog might cause, such as biting someone. However, they won't cover certain breeds. More "aggressive" dogs like Pit Bulls, German Shepherds, and Rottweilers will receive no protection.
2. Home Business
Many people dream of starting their own business and working from home. While this would provide a lot of freedom, a homeowners policy might not be adequate. A policy typically provides just $2,500 in coverage for business-related property at home. So if you have more expensive equipment that would exceed the $2,500 limit, getting a separate business insurance policy would be your best bet.
Having a home or basement flooded is a concern for many Americans. And even though it's a common claim, most homeowners policies will not cover it. In the event of a flood in your home, you'd be out of luck and would have to pay for everything out-of-pocket. Fortunately, there are separate policies you can get specifically for flood coverage, if desired.
If damage is caused due to your negligence, even if by accident or ignorance, then the insurance company likely won't cover it. Some common examples of this include:
Frozen Pipes - As the homeowner, you are expected to drain water during winter months and ensure pipes are properly insulated.
Mold - Limiting moisture is your responsibility, so your policy is likely to deny any claims relating to mold in your home.
Termites - Insurance companies view termites as a preventable issue. The best bet is to manage your property well and have a professional inspect for termites annually.
With every home, there are always things you'd like to tweak or change. It's important to know that a typical homeowners policy will not cover any damages done while a contractor is working on the house. To be properly protected, you must get proof from the contractor of their own liability insurance. So if they were to cause an injury or damage your home, THEIR insurance would cover it.
Homeowners policies typically cover pools if you already had the pool before getting the policy, and specify this when getting the policy. If you don't remember informing the insurance company of your pool or if you've gotten a pool since your most recent quote, we recommend looking at your policy. See if pools are covered or not. If not, you could be opening yourself up to a huge risk. We personally recommend you stop reading and check your policy right now.
7. Fallen Trees
If a tree falls down during a storm, any damage done will be covered. So if the tree hits your house, the homeowners policy will cover damage to the home. However, the insurance company won't pay for the removal of the fallen tree. You will have to pay out-of-pocket for the tree to be removed.
8. Expensive Jewelry
Since jewelry is such a commonly stolen item, insurance companies have lowered the limits to better cover themselves from claims. Typically, a homeowners policy allocates a limit of $1,000 or $1,500 for jewelry. So if you have more expensive jewelry than this, getting a rider or additional coverage would be a great idea for minimizing the risk.
Children absolutely love trampolines. And while getting one might be a great present to the family, your insurance company might not be too thrilled. Some policies won't cover your trampoline. Check your policy to make sure, though. Wouldn't want potential family fun to be ruined if your policy allows it!
Read the Fine Print
It's important to check your policy and know what is specifically covered and what is not. As your local agency, we are happy to review with you and detail what gaps you might have. Call us today or stop by our office.