What a Typical Homeowners Insurance Policy Covers

What a typical homeowners insurance policy covers includes the structure of your home, personal belongings within your home, liability if someone is hurt on your property or destroys neighboring property, and added living expenses and temporary housing costs while you wait on repairs. Enter your ZIP code below to get free home insurance quotes and find affordable coverage today.

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Natasha McLachlan is a writer who currently lives in Southern California. She is an alumna of California College of the Arts, where she obtained her B.A. in Writing and Literature. Her current work revolves around insurance guides and informational articles. She truly enjoys helping others learn more about everyday, practical matters through her work.

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Laura Walker graduated college with a BS in Criminal Justice with a minor in Political Science. She married her husband and began working in the family insurance business in 2005. She became a licensed agent and wrote P&C business focusing on personal lines insurance for 10 years. Laura serviced existing business and wrote new business. She now uses her insurance background to help educate...

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Reviewed by Laura Walker
Former Licensed Agent

UPDATED: Nov 6, 2020

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If you own a house, it almost goes without saying that you have homeowner’s insurance. There are some ambiguities about what is covered on homeowner’s policies. In a nutshell, most homeowner’s insurance policies cover costs for damage cause to or by your home. Since there are some differences in each policy, it is a good idea to review yours and determine what your coverage entails. You don’t want to be in a situation where something happens to your house and you don’t have the right kind or adequate coverage for the situation.

Standard Home Insurance Covers the Structure of your Home

When natural disasters like fire, tornados, strong storms or lightning occur, it can be a scary time. Your homeowner’s policy exists to cover the kinds of damage that these incidents can cause. Homeowners insurance covers buildings other than your home like, garages, pole barns, and gazebos for close to 10% of your insurance. Floods, earthquakes and wear and tear damage are not always covered in every policy since they are not considered to be standard incidents.

Standard Home Insurance Covers Personal Property

Take a good home inventory of your belongings. You want to be able to give an account to your insurance company about all property damage and loss. Having an inventory will be instrumental in giving this account. Some of the things that your home insurance policy covers are furniture, clothing, electronics, sports equipment and other standard belongings. Keep in mind that these items are typically covered by 50-70% of your policy. Another thing to remember is that belongings like fur coats, jewelry and other high
ticket items may exceed standard coverage and require an additional endorsement for a special appraisal. Whatever the costs associated with your property you should always start with a good inventory of them.

Standard Home Insurance Covers Other Liabilities

Lawsuits are no fun, but you could find yourself facing one if a person sustains injury or damage to their property by a member of your family or one of your pets. If someone slips and falls in your house and sustains an injury, your homeowner’s policy should cover their medical costs, as long as the incident was an accident and there was not deliberation to it. In a like manner, if your dog tears up a neighbor’s fence, your homeowner’s policy should cover that, as well.

Standard Home Insurance Covers Added Living Expenses

Often times houses get damaged or destroyed and the residents are not able to live there any longer. In these cases, your insurance policy can pay for your temporary housing costs, until damages are repaired. Any expense that is considered necessary for survival like food bills, are covered by your insurance while you are in a temporary residence.

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