Everything you need to know about insurance basics, like coverage types, limits, cost and more.
Build Your Own Homeowners Insurance Policy
When you’re looking for the best insurance policy for your home, you don’t want a standard out-of-the-box plan. You need a policy that’s built just for you.
That’s where American Family Insurance comes in.
We offer a variety of unique coverages so you can design a policy that provides a wide breadth of protection specific to your needs. Plus, with our optional coverages and easy-to-earn discounts, you’ll have more opportunities to take control of what you pay.
The best part? You can build your own policy easily online using our Online Home Quote Tool. You’ll be taken through some questions that’ll help you customize your policy, and if you need to talk to an agent, they’re just a quick call or email away.
Now this part is key! Before diving in and designing your policy, it’s important to understand some home insurance basics, like what coverages come standard and what optional coverages are available — as well as the discounts you can earn. That way you feel confident in the policy you’re building and know you can rely on it if you ever face the unexpected. And we’re here to walk you through what to know!
What Does My Standard Home Insurance Policy Cover?
We know that insurance can be a confusing topic — and if you haven’t reviewed your insurance documents or talked to your agent lately, it’s easy to forget exactly what you’re covered for.
Let’s start with a refresher on what usually comes standard on most home insurance policies, including at American Family:
Coverage for Your Home: Dwelling Coverage (Coverage A)
Protects your home — think roof, walls, floor, siding and windows.
Coverage for Other Structures: Other Structures Coverage (Coverage B)
Protects structures such as detached garages, sheds, fences or pools.
Coverage for Your Things: Personal Property Coverage (Coverage C)
Helps replace or repair items such as clothing, jewelry, appliances, furniture and electronics.
Coverage for Living Expenses: Loss of Use Coverage (Coverage D)
Helps pay for expenses such as hotel stays and food should your home become unlivable.
Coverage When Accidents Happen: Personal Liability (Coverage E)
Provides financial protection for property damage and injury to others.
Coverage for Medical Expenses: Medical Expense Coverage (Coverage F)
Helps pay medical expenses to others injured on or off your property.
What types of events are you protected against?
Your standard policy protects your home from unexpected events like: fire, smoke, windstorms, hail, falling objects, lightning, theft, vandalism, water damage from plumbing, heating or cooling systems and damage from the weight of ice, snow or sleet.*
Just remember, when it comes to the events you’re protected against, you’re covered up to your policy limits — which are decided when you purchase your home insurance. You can refer to your policy for covered event details, like limits and policy exclusions. And don’t worry — you don’t have to be a pro at understanding everything about your policy! But it does help to be familiar with it if you ever have to file a claim.
Optional Coverages to Design Your Policy
Next, it’s time to design your policy with our optional coverages, which protect against unexpected events that your standard policy doesn’t cover.
You can pick and choose which coverages you want to add based on your specific needs. Remember — customizing your policy is where you can really widen your net of protection!
Here are just some of the optional coverages we offer:
Increased Dwelling Limit Coverage
Included when your home is insured to at least 100% of replacement cost — increases your dwelling coverage amount by 20%.**
Jewelry, Gemstones, Watches and Furs Coverage
Your base policy includes a $2,000 coverage amount for all jewelry, gemstones, watches and furs combined. If the total value of these items is worth more, you can increase your amount of coverage and get protection for a broader range of covered events.
Equipment Breakdown Coverage
Offers protection should your appliances, home systems or smart home devices be damaged due to mechanical, electrical or pressure systems breakdown.
Hidden Water Coverage
A leak you can’t see within the walls, floors, ceilings, cabinets or anywhere else that isn’t visible can cause expensive damage to your home. Adding this optional coverage provides a wider net of protection.***
Identity Fraud Expense Coverage
Helps you cover expenses such as legal fees, loan reapplication fees, lost wages and other costs relating to restoring your good name when the unexpected happens. With this coverage, you can be reimbursed up to $25,000 for expenses associated with identity restoration.
We've partnered with CyberScout to give you easy access to their credit monitoring services, which can help you prevent, react and recover from the unexpected. It pairs seamlessly with our identity theft coverage to keep your credit, identity and data all in good shape.
Service Line Coverage
Helps pay for the cost to repair or replace damaged service lines, like underground piping or wiring for things like electrical power, heating and natural gas. Service lines that aren’t underground aren’t covered.
Sewer Back-up, Septic Back-up and Sump Overflow Coverage
Designed to mitigate the cost of repairs caused by water coming back into a home due to a backed-up drain or an overflowing sump.
Offers protection for claims brought against you including libel and/or slander; false arrest, detention or imprisonment; malicious prosecution; wrongful eviction or wrongful entry; associated legal costs.
Dwelling and Other Structures Replacement Cost Coverage
Covers the cost to repair damage to your home and other structures or rebuild them without any deduction for depreciation.†
Roof Replacement Cost Coverage
Your policy comes with some roof coverage built-in, but you do have the option to add more.
Matching Siding Coverage
In most cases, your homeowners insurance will cover damage from wind, hail, fire or a tornado to your home’s siding. However, it will only cover parts of your home that are damaged. If the same siding is no longer manufactured and a reasonable match may not be available, you could be out of luck. By adding this coverage, you can be rest assured the siding on your home will match on all four walls!
Did you know that most homeowners, renters or condo insurance policies don’t provide protection from flood damage, regardless of the insurance company? That’s why American Family offers flood insurance from the National Flood Insurance Program.
Home Renovation Insurance
Remodeling your home to fit your family’s specific wants and needs? No matter if you’re handling the renovations or a contractor is taking care of it, home renovation insurance helps protect against damage or theft of construction materials and foundation collapse during construction / renovation.
Home-Based Business Coverage
All businesses, whether they’re run out of an office or your home, need to be insured. By adding this coverage, you’re extending the same liability limits and coverages of your personal home insurance to your small business. There are some eligibility guidelines for getting this coverage — an agent can help you decide if this kind of specialized insurance is the right fit for you.
Nursing Home and Assisted Living Coverage
If a loved one moves into an assisted living facility, this coverage helps protect their personal belongings. If you and your loved one want to protect more than $15,000 in personal property, though, you should ask your agent about obtaining a renters policy.
Homeowners Insurance Discounts
Customizing your homeowners insurance to fit your exact needs doesn’t just mean getting all the right coverages — it means paying the right price, too. And we offer many ways to help you save!
Here are a few ways we help you take control of what you pay with American Family Insurance:
New Homeowner Discount
Upon purchasing your new home, you’ll be rewarded with an additional discount!
Renovated Home Discount
Have you completely replaced the plumbing, electrical and heating systems in your home in the last 15 years? You may have another homeowners discount waiting for you!
Safe, Secure, Smart Home Discount
We care about our customers’ safety — that’s why we offer our Safe, Secure, Smart Home discount for homeowners who take proactive steps to keep their home safe and secure. In fact, most smart home devices or home security systems make you eligible to save!
Bundle Auto & Home Discount
When you bundle your auto and home insurance, you could save up to 23% on both policies together.‡
Ask your agent about other discounts
We offer more home insurance discounts that you could be taking advantage of — AutoPay and Paperless are two of our easiest to earn! Take a look at your options, ask your America Family agent which ones you qualify for and start taking more control of what you pay!
Get a Home Insurance Quote
Designing a policy so it’s personalized to you is one of the smartest moves you can make as a homeowner. And being able to build your own policy online using our Home Quoting Tool gives you more control to design a policy unique to you.
Need additional help designing your policy? That’s what our experts are for! Your local American Family agent can help guide you through coverages, discounts, questions and more. Don’t hesitate to reach out if you need help navigating through the process.
Some coverages may not be available in your state. Available at mid-term renewal for some existing policyholders. Please speak with your agent to learn more about your coverage options.
*Your policy provides limited coverage when surface water comes into your home from a human made source such as sprinkler systems, garden hoses and swimming pools. However, if the release of water from these sources doesn’t occur on your property, the resulting water damage is not covered. Your policy excludes water damage from all other sources when water comes into your home. Your policy excludes water damage due to sewer back-up, septic back-up and sump overflow unless special coverage is purchased for this type of loss. Please see your agent for details on this coverage.
**Available for homeowners only.
***Hidden Water Damage coverage is an optional coverage. May not be available in all states. Some restrictions apply to seasonal homes and manufactured homes. The leak must occur from within a plumbing, heating, A/C, fire sprinkler or a home appliance. Refer to your policy documents for coverage limit details. Coverage applies after the property deductible has been met. Mold damage limited to coverage limits provided by your homeowners policy.
†Available for manufactured homeowners only.
‡Customers who bundle auto and home insurance policies may save up to 23% on both policies together (as of October 2021). Discounts may vary by state, property, policy form and company underwriting the auto and/or home policy. Discounts may not apply to all coverages on an auto or property policy.
This article is for informational purposes only and includes information widely available through different sources.