Coverage for certain hazards, sometimes known as hazard insurance, is part of the coverage provided by your homeowners insurance policy that typically provides protection for a broad number of perils. Some of these perils are natural hazards, but that is not all that homeowners policies may cover. In fact, you might be surprised to learn that the list of perils that may be covered is relatively extensive, also sometimes covering the possibility of sudden and accidental water damage from home appliance failure. Some homeowners insurance policies cover hazards that are distinctly manmade, such as vandalism.
Below is a list of some of the more common types of perils that may be covered by homeowners insurance policies. Depending on your specific policy, you may be covered for all or only some of the following.
- Heavy wind
- Damage caused by vehicles
- Falling objects
- Damage caused by the weight of snow, sleet or ice on your home
- Water damage from a household appliance
- Damage caused by water heater, air conditioner or in-home sprinkler system
- Damage caused by frozen or burst pipes
- Electrical surges
- Civil unrest or riot
It's important to remember that not all insurance policies are the same. In some cases, coverage can differ from one state to another. For this reason, it's vital that you have a clear understanding of what is covered by your policy and never simply assume that certain perils are covered. If you are unsure about what is covered under your homeowners insurance policy, you should talk to your insurance agent to clarify the details.
Now that you know what types of perils homeowners insurance policies typically cover, it's time to determine what aspects of your home are covered. Usually, not only is the physical structure of your home paid for if it sustains damages from the covered perils, but so are the personal belongings that you keep in your home, as well as other structures on your property that are not connected to your house.
The trick here is to make sure that the insurance you have for your personal belongings is sufficient to cover their value. According to the Insurance Information Institute, most homeowners policies allot anywhere from 50 to 70 percent of the dollar amount for which the physical structure is insured. What this means is that if your house is covered for $200,000, the limit of insurance on your personal belongings will probably be between $100,000 and $140,000.
To help ensure that your limit will cover all of your personal possessions, take an inventory of your home using Allstate's Digital Locker tool. You might discover that your belongings are worth a lot more than that. If you realize that your policy limits are lower than the amount your belongings are worth, you may want to contact your insurance agent to discuss your options for raising the limits.
Looking for a good homeowners insurance policy? Visit Allstate.com's Home Insurance Coverage section for more information.