Homeowner’s Advice – All Wet

Enjoying a great book nestled under a blanket during a rainstorm is one of life’s great gifts.   But what happens when a water droplet splashes onto the page or you feel the squish of water through the bottom of your bunny slippers.  The fact is, water has invaded your home.  Whether your Homeowner’s policy covers it has a ton to do with how you policy is set up and what caused the water to spread in the first place.

So how do you know if you’re covered and what can you do to make sure your policy is ready for this kind of problem?  Well here are some helpful tips:

  • Natural Floods 

No Homeowner’s policies include flood insurance.  If you want to purchase it, ask your agent for information about a separate Flood Insurance policy.  It’s through the government and has sparse coverage at best.

Solution: Choose your home wisely and consider water as a major part of home buying decisions.  If your home is flood prone, make sure you have well place gutters and expert advice on proper drainage.

  • Leaking Roof

Roof leaks are a common claim scenario.  If a terrible storm blows off shingles and water pours in, you’re covered.  If your roof was super old and had clearly existing previous problems, most likely the damage won’t be covered.  Insurance companies expect homeowners to take reasonably good care of their roof and fix or replace trouble areas.

Solution:  Replacing your roof every 15 years is costly, but saves you on your insurance premium and makes sure that you will be covered if rain comes through the roof.

  • Plumbing Backup 

My parents always tell this story where I came home from college one weekend when they were out of town.  After a trip to the can I flushed and left the house.  They came home hours later to find a running toilet and a flooded basement.  They were covered because they had the right policy.  Watch out for “Basic” policies that don’t cover plumbing.

Solution:  Make sure you have an HO-2 or HO-3 Homeowners Policy.  Avoid the HO-1.

  • Rain Coming Through Your  Door 

So the weather was beautiful and you left the back door open while you were at work.  A huge rainstorm came through and soaked your wood floor.  Are you covered?  Probably not.  Here’s the rule: If mother nature let herself in you’re covered.  If you let her in, probably not!

Solutions:  Make reasonable decisions about securing your doors and windows.

 

So there are a few tips.  Pat yourself on the back for making it through another Shine “Get Yerself Insurance Educated” post.

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