Think your home insurance policy covers every mishap that can come your way? No way!
You don’t want to be caught off guard. Most standard policies exclude certain things that homeowners might assume are actually covered. Don't bank on your insurance company footing the bill for the following unfortunate situations.
 Home Renovations
A lot of homeowners don't realize they need to take out a specific renovation policy if they're doing major work, even if the contractor has a builder's risk policy.
It's OK if you're just doing cosmetic updates; but if you're taking the roof off, that's more than a standard homeowners policy is designed to protect.
If someone gets hurt on the property, you're liable," she explains. "If neighborhood kids are playing around in the empty house, that's your liability.
 Earthquake Damage
If you live on a major fault line, it's probably wise to invest in earthquake insurance since it's not usually included in homeowners coverage—even in the places that need it the most (e.g., California and the Pacific Northwest).
If a quake strikes and you don't have this specific policy, you'll be liable for paying for repairs to your property on your own.
 Slow Leaks
Damaged caused by slow leaks—technically "seepage and leakage"—can be denied coverage.
Water damage has to be sudden and accidental. A prime example is a client whose contractor nicked a pipe behind a wall. The pipe was connected to a seldom-used guest bathroom, so nobody noticed the leak. When they rented out the home years later, the tenants called a few months later to report that the floorboards were warping. The slow leak cased $25,000 in damage—and the homeowners insurance didn't pay out a nickel.
What if the earth opens up and swallows your house whole?
It’s totally not covered. Sinkholes are not covered under the normal home insurance. You would need to add additional coverage for earthquake and/or earth movement.
 Sewer And Drain Backups
If the sewer backs up and fills your house with raw sewage, you might have to clean up the mess yourself—and on your own dime.
In a lot of places, when there's serious rain, the sewers and drains can back up into people's homes. Not all policies will cover that.
 Meth Labs That You Had No Idea Were There
If a rental home explodes from a tenant's meth lab, it will not be covered at all due to the exclusion for illegal activity and pollution exposure. This is why you have to screen your tenants.
 Acts Of War
If the U.S. government determines we are at war and your home is destroyed as a result of the war, you will not be covered. Destruction from acts of terrorism, however, is generally covered.
 Keeping The Historical Society Happy
If you live in a landmark area and you need permission from the historical society to make changes to your home, there might be a cap on how much your insurance will pay to fix a problem. And the historical society might dictate the material you use on your home, no matter how expensive it is.
 Smell Damage
Smells that stick around your home and possessions aren't covered by most policies.
If a homeowner in the process of renovating a home put all of their belongings in a storage unit that happened to be right next to a restaurant, and when he went to get his things back, all his possessions, including his mattress, permanently smelled like curry.
With a typical insurance policy, you'd be stuck replacing everything yourself or sleeping on a smelly bed.
|John Castelli Realtor|
Keller Williams Realty Partners
p: (847) 685-8300 m: (773) 851-7636
w: www.SoldByCastelli.com e: JohnCastelli@kw.com
a: 700 Busse Hwy. Park Ridge, IL 60068