Homeowners insurance policies can be different, as they are catered to the individual homeowner based on their own unique needs.
But, you can get a good idea of what's covered in a typical homeowners insurance policy by looking at some of the most common, standard coverages included in a homeowners insurance policy.
One thing to consider about homeownership is the knowledge that your house could be damaged at any given time, under a variety of different circumstances. Having homeowners insurance gives you the peace of mind that comes in knowing you are protected if a covered loss happens. One of the basic characteristics of your homeowners insurance policy is dwelling protection, which covers the home in which you live, as well as other structures that are attached to it, such as a garage or a deck.
Typical homeowners insurance also extends that coverage to other structures that lie on your property but are separate from your home, like a detached garage, tool shed or fence.
Homeowners insurance doesn't just cover damage to your dwelling and other structures. It may also provide coverage for the personal belongings you keep within it. For this reason, it's important that you have a good idea of the monetary value of your belongings. Don't worry, this doesn't mean you have to make a list of every single trinket you own, but it is a good idea to create a home inventory, paying special attention to items of high monetary or personal value. You should be able to tell your insurance agent the approximate value of any expensive belongings or valuable artwork that you own. Depending on the value of those belongings, your insurance premiums may rise or fall, but you will have coverage available to you if they're stolen, damaged or irreparably lost. If you need a hand in tracking all of your personal property, try the Allstate Digital Locker®, a free application that you can use on any computer or mobile device to inventory your belongings.
One important thing to consider for personal property protection is the dollar limits for which you are covered. Check your policy to make sure that it provides adequate coverage for your belongings, and if it doesn't, you may want to talk to your insurance agent about your options for raising the limits.
Not all natural disasters are covered. Many typical homeowners insurance policies offer coverage for fires, lightning strikes, windstorms and hail. Earthquakes and flooding are not typically covered. Homeowners should discuss their options with an insurance agent. If you want to purchase earthquake or flood insurance and your homeowners policy doesn't provide coverage, you can inquire about a separate insurance policy that will cover your home and belongings.
Nobody likes to think about what would happen in the event someone gets injured on his or her property, but accidents happen. And unfortunately, so do lawsuits, even among friends. A typical homeowners insurance policy provides liability coverage when someone not living with you is injured while on your property. Whether that injury happens to be a nasty fall on your kitchen linoleum or a trip down your front porch stairs, bodily injury liability coverage can help save you from the financial responsibility of paying an attorney to defend you or paying medical bills if you are found at fault.
You also likely will want to talk to your insurance agent about replacement cost versus actual cash value and which type of coverage your policy should include.
Determining the precise type of coverage you need and the monetary levels of coverage that are right for your situation can be easy if you work with an insurance company that will help guide you through the process. Click here to find an Allstate agent near you.
Published: December 2012