Everything you need to know about insurance basics, like coverage types, limits, cost and more.
What Is Homeowners Insurance and Why Should You Have It?
You’ve worked hard to make your home the best it can be — it’s the place where your dreams grow and your family thrives. That’s why it’s so important to protect it with homeowners insurance. But what exactly is homeowners insurance and how does it help protect your home? Let’s look at some common homeowners insurance questions.
Definition of Homeowners Insurance
A homeowners insurance policy offers protection for your home and the belongings inside. It’s a way to help you replace or repair your belongings if they are damaged, destroyed or stolen. Homeowners insurance also provides liability coverage against accidents in your home, on your property and sometimes off your property so you can stay focused on what matters most.
Basically, homeowners insurance is a policy that combines two main types of coverage:
Property coverage. This helps when your home and your possessions are destroyed or damaged by certain events, such as: fire, theft or storms.
Liability coverage. Here coverage steps in if you injure someone or cause damage to their property accidentally. It also helps if your children or your pets accidentally cause bodily injury to another person.
What Does Homeowners Insurance Cover?
The main purpose of the property coverage portion of homeowners insurance is to help you recover from an accident or event that you had no control over. It helps put things back the way they were, without you footing all of the expenses.
Property Coverage and Homeowners Insurance
So what does an accident or event mean and how can your property be affected? Let’s look at some common examples when homeowners insurance applies:
Fire, wildfires and smoke. The fire itself can cause serious damage, but smoke from that fire can also ruin your property.
Hail, lightning and windstorms. Mother Nature can really whip up some trouble. These unexpected events shouldn’t leave you struggling with repairs.
Weight of ice, snow or sleet. The weight of winter can put stress on your home.
Theft and vandalism. Protecting your family, your home and your possessions is top-priority for you. Homeowners insurance is an extra tool to help you do just that, whether someone breaks into your home or spray paints your wall.
Frozen interior plumbing. Frozen and broken pipes certainly leave a mess.
Falling objects. Luckily, not many homes are hit by blue ice or meteors. But, if they are, there’s insurance to help you recover.
Water damage. This doesn’t include all types of water damage, but it’s designed to cover certain types of damage resulting from your interior plumbing, heating or cooling systems. Talk to your agent about other policy options if you have additional water concerns.
If any of the above events happen, your homeowners insurance not only helps you pay for replacing and restoring your home and property, it helps you get on your feet faster.
Liability Coverage and Homeowners Insurance
The second part of homeowners insurance is centered on liability coverage. This means that someone else has been injured in a way that was caused by you, your pets, your children or while on your property.
Think of this part of your homeowners insurance as a way to ensure that all the people you come in contact with are safe around you, your home and your family. You certainly don’t want them to get hurt, but accidents happen and you want to do your share to help.
What Are the Types of Homeowners Insurance?
You want homeowners insurance that fits your needs and your personal situation, and luckily, there are many different types of insurance available. Let’s look at some of coverages you can select with American Family Insurance.
Coverage A. This is dwelling coverage that’s used to rebuild or repair your home following a covered loss.
Coverage B. If you have other structures, like a detached garage, shed or fence, this is the coverage that protects them.
Coverage C. Your personal belongings including furniture, clothing and appliances may be covered under coverage C if they’re stolen, damaged or destroyed.
Coverage D. This is called loss of use coverage. It pays for your living expenses if you can’t live in your home after one of the covered events mentioned above. By covering temporary housing expenses, American Family Insurance lets you focus on the things that matter most.
Coverage E. The liability portion of your homeowners insurance is the focus here. With coverage E you may be covered if you’re sued and found legally responsible for someone else’s injury or property damage.
Coverage F. This again applies to the liability portion of your coverage but this specifically deals with medical payments to others, regardless of your legal responsibility.
These coverage options give you protection in many different situations and your agent can help you understand each coverage type and how it relates to your unique circumstances. You might discover a need for additional coverage that will provide you with necessary protection and added peace of mind. Whatever your situation, your agent can help you understand what you need to protect what matters most.
What Does Homeowners Insurance Cost?
A big consideration when you’re buying insurance is how much it will cost. Because the value of your home and your personal property is so personalized, there’s not a one-size-fits-all answer. But there’s a quick way to get an idea of which coverages you might need. Use our Homeowners Insurance Calculator to learn what coverages you need. Then complete a quote request or speak with an agent to get a customized answer. Don’t forget to have a discussion about ways you can save money with homeowners insurance discounts.
Are You Required to Have Homeowners Insurance?
If you have a mortgage, your lender will require you to have a homeowners insurance policy. Your lender wants to be reassured that if something happens to your property, the mortgage obligations will still be covered.
In addition, most homeowners want to have the security and confidence that comes with insurance. This way, if something does happen, you’ll be able to recover quickly and continue moving forward. It’s an important way to protect the things that matter most.
To learn more and to find coverage that’s customized to you, your family and your home, connect with an American Family agent. They’re the experts and can help you find coverage that fits.