In some instances, homeowner’s insurance isn’t just a need, it’s a requirement. If you obtain a mortgage to purchase a home, insurance is required. It doesn’t matter whether it’s your first home, a vacation getaway or an income property, homeowner’s insurance protects your investment.
You can legally own a home without insurance if it’s completely paid for. However, if anything happens to damage or destroy the home, you’ll be responsible for all the costs of clean-up, repairs, reconstruction, and replacement.
What it Covers
There are a few variations in coverage, depending on the insurance company. The standard homeowner’s policy provides the funds to repair damage done to a home as a result of situations that includes fire, smoke, storms, falling trees, theft and vandalism. The policy provides replacement for contents, which includes personal possessions, furnishings and appliances that are damaged.
You’ll also receive reimbursement for damage to your garage and any outbuildings, along with play and recreational equipment, grills and fences. Some items, such as swimming pools and outdoor fireplaces may be covered, but they may also require a separate policy, depending on the insurer. The expense to replace any of those items can cost thousands without home insurance coverage.
Cost of Living
If your home is rendered unlivable after a disaster, a homeowner’s policy will typically pay for living expenses until your home is restored. If someone is injured while on your property, medical and legal fees will be paid by the insurer.
Know the Details
It’s critical that you understand the details of your policy, especially the exclusions. There are some things that the policy won’t cover or coverage may be contingent on a separate policy known as a rider. Some insurers exclude certain dog breeds or all canines. Before you purchase any policy, have the agent explain anything you don’t understand. People usually don’t realize how much money they have invested in the contents of their home. Talk with the agent about the amount of coverage you need.