Do you have the home insurance coverage you need?

There are many factors beyond the insurance company, the premium costs and basic categories that determine if you are getting the home insurance coverage you need. Many people trust that they are completely covered, while in fact there are gaps in their policy that could create devastating consequences in the event of a large or small scale disaster. You can get an idea of how protected you are by your current or potential plan by evaluating on two sets of criteria:

Understand what is actually in the policy compared to what you thought was included
While this may sound simple enough, explore your specific protection by thoroughly reading the policy fine print on the following areas:

  • Structure loss coverage due to fire or lightning- will it cover your mortgage and current market value?
  • Personal property loss- what amount do they value replacing your items?
  • Loss of use- where will you live in the interim?
  • Medical payments-does it include falls, burns or other injuries- and to whom?
  • Natural disasters -define which ones are covered and how

Understand what is not covered and how difficult is to become protected
Once you understand what is included in the policy you have or are considering, take an objective look at any gaps that could create issues later on. Some common areas to consider:

  • Floods, earthquakes, and sinkholes are usually exclusions
  • Mold and water damage (coverage may be determined by the cause)
  • Injuries by undisclosed pets or certain breeds
  • Wind (roof damage, straight line winds) or hail may or may not be covered in the way expected, or may carry a much higher deductible than the rest of the policy if they are included.

The language on the policy can make it tough for anyone without an insurance background to understand. Working with a trusted insurance agent can allow you to talk to them and walk through every line of the coverage and exclusions. You can also take the time to think back a few years and consider storms or disasters in your area as a basis from identifying possible claims that could come up.  Find insurance agents on within your local area.

Some of the items not covered are generally excluded from any plan, and require a different option for gaining coverage. For example, flood insurance is often only available through state or federal agencies. Earthquakes may not be covered, but can sometimes be added at an additional cost as an endorsement on a policy.

Once you consider what is and is not included in your particular policy, it is easier to be satisfied that you currently have the home insurance coverage you need, or know what additional coverages are needed. So, identifying the gaps can help secure the home insurance coverage you need.

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