What Homeowners Covers – First Time Buyers Guide

Congratulations! You’re ready to stop renting and purchase a home of your own. Selecting the right homeowners insurance is an important step. Square State Insurance is the perfect agency to help you through this transition. But first thing is first, you may be wondering exactly what homeowners covers. Not to worry, we’ll help break down standard homeowners coverage so it is easy to understand.

The Home Itself

Obviously enough, homeowners coverage protects your home against damage incurred from incidents that are not deemed “Acts of God.” This includes damages to the roof, walls, foundation, etc. This essentially means any part of your home, visible or not. Homeowners policies extend to other structures on your property including garages, sheds and other decorative structures. As we said, a wide variety of claims are covered from instances like storms, theft, fire, appliance failure and much more. However, Acts of God like floods, earthquakes, hurricanes and wildfires are not covered without adding separate coverage. Do you have rare plants or trees around the house? Yep, those are covered too, even if they aren’t rare.

What’s Inside The Home

In addition to the home itself, you’re probably wondering what homeowners covers aside from structures. Just like the renters policy you may have had in the past, homeowners covers everything inside your home, i.e all your possessions. These possessions don’t even have to be in the home to be protected. If they are damaged or lost in off-site storage or on your person, they are still covered. Note that very expensive items like fine art, jewelry and other heirlooms and collectibles are only partially covered by a standard policy. You’ll need to add additional coverage to make sure those precious items are fully covered. So when you ask what homeowners covers in your home, the answer is quite a lot.

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Homeowners covers structures like decks as well.

Costs When You’re Displaced

When you think about what homeowners covers, you may not immediately think about displacement costs. However, this can be an important part of any policy. When the unthinkable happens to your home and you can’t live in it for an extended period of time, homeowners will help cover hotel and restaurant costs when you’re displaced. This coverage has a limit and only extends for a set number of days, and you’ll want to pay attention to it’s length. It may last only a week or two, and you might want to add more if you don’t think it’ll be enough. A severe incident may leave you out of your home for months. If you have no other alternative places to live, you may want to up your displacement coverage.

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Homeowners coverage will help you pay for hotels when you can’t stay at home due to damage, including rooms for your kids.

Liability Claims

So you’ve got your home, your belongings and potential displacement costs covered, but your most expensive claims might come from elsewhere, namely liability claims. Accidents that happen to others on your property or in your home can result in very expensive claims. Severe liability claims might land you in court, and homeowners coverage will help with the costs incurred in legal proceedings. Policies extend to cover any damage your children or pets may inflict on others or their property as well. This said, standard homeowners policies have a limit. You may want to add umbrella insurance if you think you may need more coverage for serious lawsuits and claims. Remember, homeowners won’t cover accidents you cause or any injuries you or your family may sustain while in or around your home.

Final Thoughts On What Homeowners Covers

When you first consider coverage for your home, including what homeowners covers and what it doesn’t, the task can seem intimidating. After all, you also have to deal with inspections and the closing, not to mention the exhaustion of house hunting for what may be months. But now that you know the basics of what homeowners covers, let us help you through the rest of the process to make sure you get the absolute best policy to meet your needs. Contact Square State for your personal homeowners insurance evaluation today.

Thumb image and image one and two courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

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