Is your home fully protected by homeowners insurance? Depending on the plan you have, it might not be. Take a look at your current policy before hurricane season really kicks into gear, then consider some of these other forms of insurance as well.
Homeowners Insurance: The Basic Plan
Most homes will need to have some form of basic insurance, and that’s what this particular form of coverage offers. These plans will typically reimburse you for damage caused by lightning, hail, theft, fire, and certain types of windstorms – but only to a certain point, and only rarely in high-risk areas like Florida. You can also expect these plans to protect you from liability, loss of use, additional structures (such as a detached shed), and dwelling coverage that helps to rebuild your home.
Flood Insurance: Stopping You from Going Under
Homeowners insurance almost never covers flooding, which means that you’ll need to get this coverage separately – and considering the amount of rain that hurricanes can unleash, having flood insurance is critical for full protection against the damage that these storms can cause. Recent legislation has helped to sharply reduce the premiums that many homeowners were expecting to pay, so flood insurance can now be purchased with confidence that the price will remain manageable.
Windstorm Insurance: The Major Source of Protection
If you live in a region prone to hurricanes and similarly dangerous events, then windstorms probably aren’t included in the basic coverage for your home. Additional windstorm coverage will protect your house against non-flooding damage caused by hurricanes, and will usually cover just about anything that a storm could actually do to your house.
Deciding Which Types of Insurance to Buy
This mostly depends on where, exactly, you’re living. For example, some locations have little or no risk of serious flooding because they’re too high on a hill or a slope – so the coverage may not be necessary. If you live in a hurricane zone, though, chances are that you’ll need to purchase all three forms of coverage: basic homeowners insurance, quality flood insurance, and windstorm insurance for the damage that will almost certainly be done to the house at some point in time. When in doubt, it’s usually better to have more insurance than less.
Disclaimer: The above explanations are meant to be general overviews of different policies. Individual insurance policies for homes may vary in the coverage they provide.