What perils are typically covered in a homeowner’s insurance policy?

A guide on what you’re protected with and why, by one of Minnesota’s oldest and most trusted insurance companies. Below is a list with more details about perils covered by a typical insurance policy, scroll down to read. 

Fire and Smoke

If your home ever experiences a fire, your insurance policy will likely cover the losses from fire and/or smoke. It’s important to thoroughly document your losses and any damages that have occurred in the home, including the location of damage, type of damage, and description of the damage. It’s important to know the timeframe in which you are able to submit a claim and to confirm if smoke damage is included in your policy.

Windstorms and Hail Damage

It’s important to check your insurance policy to see if windstorms and hail are covered. In most cases, homeowners insurance usually helps cover windstorm damage caused by tornadoes and hurricanes. Damage from hail is also covered in a standard home insurance policy, but the coverage could be applied in different ways, depending on where you live. It’s important to check all areas of your home for any hail damage – sometimes your home may seem safe from the storm, but there could be underlying issues that can be reported in your claim.

Water Damage

If the cause of water damage in your home is sudden and accidental, your homeowners insurance policy is likely to cover it. Insurance policies typically cover accidents, such as a pipe bursting in your kitchen sink and the repercussions of the accident – such as a damaged floor – but they will not cover the source of the water damage. For example, the sink faucet or bursted pipe. Water damage in a homeowners policy does not typically cover if water backs up into your home through an outside sewer or drain. And lastly, no type of flood damage is covered by a standard homeowner policy – you will very likely need to purchase a separate flood policy.

Vandalism and Malicious Mischief

Most homeowner policies cover vandalism and malicious mischief as part of the coverage, even though this type of policy is more important for properties that are not occupied during most periods of the day – such as churches and schools. This includes any damages caused to your home, such as breaking a window or door, by someone that is not on the insurance policy, such as a neighbor. If the home has been vacant for more than 60 consecutive days, or if the vandalism is committed by any insured on the policy, it will likely not be covered.

Theft

Homeowners insurance policies typically include coverage for the theft of any personal property. So, if someone breaks into your home and steals your TV, it is covered by your policy. Any damage that is caused by the burglar or thief is also usually included in the policy. However, car theft is not included on a homeowner’s policy, even if the car is on your property; you will need comprehensive insurance to cover car theft. But, some policies do cover if items are stolen from your vehicle, such as luggage or purses. It is important to distinguish if your policy covers the item for Actual Cash Value or Replacement Cost Value.

Lightning Strikes

Like most of the other perils above, lightning strikes are covered by homeowners insurance policies, including the cost of the lightning strike, resulting fires/explosions, and any property damaged from the strike, including electronics. It is important for homeowners to install a lightning protection system and install surge protectors to help reduce the damage if a strike were ever to occur.

Overall, it’s important to check with your insurance provider what perils are covered by your policy. Based on your location, your policy could have different coverage plans for perils that are more common in your area or state, such as hail or snow storms.

It’s also important to note that flood and earthquake insurance are not covered under standard homeowners insurance policies, and are available as a separate policy. Likewise, sewer backup and maintenance damage are not included in the standard policy, so it is important to keep up with your home to help prevent accidents and the amount of damage.


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At the WA Group, we have a long heritage of helping people. We help you:

PLAN SMART. It all begins with a conversation. A conversation centered on you, your family and your business

LIVE BIG. To Live Big means knowing that you are covered. It means knowing that the things that matter most to you will be protected.

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