November 30, 2023

Insurance for water damage in your home is often part of your general homeowners policy. Your insurance may cover losses that are due to a pipe that burst or an appliance that leaks, but may not if you are exposed to a flood, tornado or hurricane.

For this kind of coverage you will need a separate policy. Unfortunately, many homeowners recognize this way too late. You can choose how much coverage you purchase, but do get the extra coverage.

Before you go to purchase your policy, decide how much you will actually need. Do you want to have replacement value coverage or just have current value coverage. There is a big difference. If you only buy current value, it will pay based on what your used items are worth, it won’t pay to purchase new items. There is a difference in price for the policies, but it would be worth it in the event you need to use it.

If while you were sleeping, your pipes froze and burst, your insurance will cover the water damage. However, if you left your home with the heater turned off while on vacation, your insurance will not cover these damages.

If your dishwasher overflows causing extensive water damage to your home, your insurance company will most likely cover the structure and all of it’s contents but they won’t necessarily pay to repair the dishwasher. Any leaking roof which causes problems is usually covered by homeowners insurance.

If your roof leaked because of a natural event such as hail, falling trees, or very high winds it will be covered since they are covered by insurance for water damage. Some of the claims such as sewer backups, flooding from an overflowing river or lake, and water seepage (usually seen in basements) are usually not covered by a regular homeowners insurance policy.

If you want to be covered from natural floods such as tidal surges, overflowing rivers and streams and flash floods, you will need to purchase a nationwide flood insurance policy from the federal government. Many people believe if you don’t live in a 100 year or 500 year flood plain, then this isn’t a policy for them. It is important to know that flooding can take place anywhere outside of known flood zones. Unfortunately, many people just don’t realize they should have flood insurance.

You must make sure that you are fully aware of the flood risk in your area, and the time of year when you are at the highest risk for flooding. Most insurance for water damage can take up to a couple of months or even more to go through and become fully active.