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What Homeowners Insurance Doesn’t Cover

fh-2Homeowners insurance is purchased  in case something damages or destroys a home. The policy is intended to give consumers peace of mind in case of a fire, theft or another catastrophe. However, many homeowners find out the hard way what homeowners insurance doesn’t cover.

Emma and Dave are a good example. They had been living in their home for five years and maintained an all-perils policy on their property as required by their mortgage holder. After a series of storms, flooding became a problem and damaged the first floor of their two-story home. The list of damages was lengthy but Emma and Dave felt relieved that their insurance would cover repairs.

However, that turned out to be wrong because their policy excluded flood damage. Their insurance company didn’t have to pay a dime towards their claim. Fortunately, they received some money from FEMA to help with the damage but they still ended up paying thousands of dollars to restore their home to a livable condition.

Slash Your Home Insurance Premiums. Search for Lower Rates Their story is not an isolated case. Many homeowners believe their insurance policy will protect them in almost any situation, but even so-called all peril policies, which are most commonly chosen by homeowners, do not cover all sorts of damage. Here are a few examples that are not covered by most common homeowners insurance:

• Flood damage – Flood damage is rarely paid by standard homeowners coverage.  A separate policy is needed to cover most flood damage through the National Flood Insurance Program. In some high-risk areas, flood insurance is required.

• Earthquake damage – Although insurance companies usually offer this coverage at an additional cost, most policies do not include earthquake damage. However, not all locations have a significant risk of damage so you may be able to do without this coverage, but you should always double check before making that assumption. Interestingly, the earthquake exclusion in most policies also means landslide and sinkhole damage won’t be covered either.

• Expansive soil damage – The soil beneath your home could end up damaging your home if you live atop expansive soil. This type of soil contains large amounts of clay, which gets better when it gets wet. As a result, the soil can expand and cause damage. A homes foundation, driveway, sidewalk, and basement could all be seriously damaged as a result of expanding soil and is rarely covered by homeowners insurance.

• Other damages – Typical homeowners insurance policies also exclude damage caused as a result of nuclear accidents and acts of war. In the event of either scenario filing a claim may be the last thing on your mind.

Even though homeowners insurance covers damages from many issues, researching exactly what is covered can be the difference between living in a home that is in good condition and dealing with problems for years to come.  Considering  extra protection in case of floods or earthquakes can be the safest alternative.