What Does Homeowners Insurance Cover?
Homeowners insurance covers so much more than just your house. Homeowners also covers other structures on your property (barn, shed, fence), your belongings (furniture, clothes, electronics), lawsuits, and even temporary living expenses during home repairs. And yes, these coverages come standard at no extra cost. Just get a homeowners insurance quote, and you can see all your coverages.
STANDARD HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE COVERAGES
These are the basic homeowners insurance coverages and come standard in your homeowners policy.
Covers damage to your house and attachments
Dwelling coverage pays for damage to your house and anything permanently attached to it, including your garage, roof, chimneys, attached deck, countertops, cabinets, flooring, vanities, etc.
Example: A pipe in your kitchen bursts and water damages your walls, cabinets, countertops, appliances, and hardwood floors. This then pays to repair or replace what's damaged and water removal.
Covers structures not permanently attached to your house
Other structures coverage includes unattached garages, gazebos, decks, patios, sheds, pergolas, fences, driveways, etc.
Example: During a windstorm, a tree falls and damages your shed, fence, deck, and pool. This then pays to repair or replace the structures that were damaged and tree removal.
Covers your belongings if they're stolen or damaged
Personal possessions covers just about all of your stuff if it's damaged or stolen. This can include electronics, furniture, clothes, tools/power equipment, and more. Your items are even covered if they're not stored in your home (sheds, garages, your car, storage facilities, etc.).
Example: Someone breaks into your car and steals your phone, clothes, and camping equipment. You'll then get payment for those items, but there may be limitations on some of them.
Jewelry, art, memorabilia, computers, and other expensive items: Certain limits may apply to your more expensive items, but don't worry, you can get additional coverage for jewelry and other expensive items. Just complete your quote, and we'll guide you through adding the right coverage as you're buying. Plus, we have licensed home insurance agents available to help.
Loss of use
Covers temporary living expenses
You'll never be left homeless. If your home is damaged from a covered loss (meaning something insurance pays for) and you can't stay there, loss of use covers hotel, rent, and food expenses above what you'd normally pay.
Example: There's a fire in your home, and you can't stay there for two weeks. If you spend $1,500 eating out, loss of use will cover that food bill beyond what you normally spend, and your rent/hotel expenses. Make sure you keep your receipts.
Covers lawsuits against you
If someone sues you or a family member you live with (for injuries or damage to their property), personal liability will pay for your lawyer, court fees, and certain damages you have to pay, subject to your policy.
Example: A delivery person slips and falls at your house and sues you for their medical bills, lost wages, and damaged merchandise. Or, your child spray paints your neighbor's garage, and they sue you. Personal liability covers all of those instances.
Covers injuries on your property
Medical payments coverage pays for medical bills if someone else is hurt at your home or on your property.
Example: Your child's friend breaks her arm at your house, and their parents ask you to pay the medical bill. Medical payments then covers the medical costs.
OPTIONAL HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE COVERAGES
You can add any of these coverages to customize your policy based on your needs.
Covers water damage from backed-up sump pumps and sewer systems
Some homes have sump pumps in their basements/crawl spaces, which are designed to pump water out from underneath and around your foundation. Sometimes sump pumps or plumbing/sewer systems get backed up. Water can then flood into your house, causing an expensive mess. Water back-up coverage will then pay for damage to your belongings and water removal.
Example: Your sump pump breaks down, and water/sewage floods back into your basement, damaging your carpet, furniture, billiards table, washer, and dryer. Water back-up then pays for the sewage removal and that damage to your property.
Covers uncommon but expensive lawsuits and situations
Personal injury covers your legal fees and additional damages from:
Slander or libel lawsuits (something you say/write that damages a person's reputation or business)
Lawsuits against you such as wrongful entry or malicious prosecution
False arrest, detention, or imprisonment
Example: Your teenage child damages their teacher's reputation by posting something online. So, the teacher decides to sue you. Personal injury will then cover your lawyer, court fees, and any damages you have to pay, subject to your policy.
PERILS: WHAT YOU'RE PROTECTED AGAINST
Perils are really just things that can damage your house, other structures on your property, and your belongings.
What's typically covered
Fire and smoke
Damage from the weight of ice, snow, or sleet
Windstorms and hail
Explosions (e.g., aerosol can or gas grill)
Vandalism and riots
Car/aircraft crashing into your home
Falling trees or other objects
Water damage (from leaking roofs, bursting pipes, or broken appliances, but not floods)
What's not covered
If you quote through the Cribb Insurance Group, we'll help you add coverage for any of these. But, you may need a separate policy depending on the carrier you choose.
Floods (if you live in a flood plane, your lender will likely require this insurance)
Earthquakes, landslides, and mudslides
GENERAL WEAR AND TEAR IS NOT COVERED BY ANY POLICY
If your roof is old and simply needs to be replaced, no insurance policy will cover it. But, if that same old roof were damaged in a storm and heavy winds ripped off shingles, then it'd be covered.
Expected events = not covered
Unexpected events = covered