Understanding Homeowner’s Insurance: What’s Covered?

Understanding Homeowner's Insurance: What's Covered

We all have a place that we call home, and being a homeowner is one of your biggest investments. Think about what your current homeowners’ policy covers. Do you know what would happen in an emergency? Are your limits high enough to cover these emergencies? Do you know your deductible cost? Are you getting the best rate possible? These are just questions you need to ask yourself about your policy. You have the right to know the answer, especially since you are paying for it.

You don’t have to be an insurance guru, just know the basics so you are guaranteed to have all your needs met. Let’s break down the two main sections of a standard homeowners insurance policy: property protection and liability to others.

Property Protection

This covers damage to your property. This can be broken down into the following areas: dwelling, other structures, personal property, and loss of use. If there is a fire or a hail storm, the dwelling portion protects the structure of your home.  Your garage, driveway, and swimming pool are covered under other structures. Personal property is all your furniture, clothing, sporting goods, etc. that you own. This extends to your personal belongings anywhere in the world, such as if you are staying at a hotel.  It is recommended that you insure all personal property for its replacement cost value, so what you bought a year ago can be replaced at today’s prices. Finally, loss of use will cover any additional expenses over and above your normal living expenses, in the event of a covered loss that forces you from your home, such as a fire.

Always keep an eye out for hazards around your home, even in your neighbor’s yard. Let us imagine your neighbor’s tree limb fell on top of your home, causing damage to your roof, whose insurance would cover the costs to repair your roof? This would be covered under your insurance, unless there were visible signs the tree was dying or needed a trim.

Liability to Others

This covers against lawsuits for bodily injury or property damages that you or someone in your household may cause to others. This part of the policy will cover you whether you are home or away. How does this coverage work? Let’s say your son is playing catch and the ball accidentally hits the neighbor’s window. Your homeowners’ policy will cover the costs to have the window repaired, minus your deductible.

It is your right and responsibility to know what your insurance policy covers and to do your best to prevent accidents from happening. Investing in a home security system or updating locks and deadbolts not only keeps you safe, but they can also help you earn discounts on your insurance. Contact your agent with any questions or concerns you may have with your homeowners’ policy, and ask about any discounts for which you may be eligible. We know accidents happen and all of us at PDCM Insurance want you to be prepared. We encourage you to know what your insurance will cover and we are more than happy to review your policy with you.

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