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Homeowners Insurance: What Is Covered And What Is Not

As a new homeowner, it is hard to know what is and isn’t covered under a homeowners insurance policy. Is a roof leak covered? How about mold damage? What about if your dog bites a guest in your home?

This guide will cover all of that. It will also go over the difference between a replacement cost policy and a cash value policy, what goes into filing a claim, and how long it generally takes to receive a payout from your homeowners insurance company.

Standard Insurance Coverage

In the event of any damage, standard insurance policies are there to cover repairs to or replacement of your house, condo, or townhome. Whether that damage comes from a fire or a falling tree, it is covered. The coverage doesn’t just extend to the roof, walls, and floors.

Coverages also include:

  • Appliances
  • Heating and cooling systems
  • Furniture
  • Clothing and accessories
  • Other personal belongings

Living expenses are also typically covered if you have to stay elsewhere due to the damage. Any outbuildings on your property – such as a detached garage, a shed, or a barn – are usually also covered under house insurance.

What’s more, if someone else gets injured while on your property, you can be reimbursed for medical expenses and legal fees, with liability also included in your coverage.

If you ever do need to make a claim, you should be aware of your policy’s specifics. Having an inventory of your possessions and their estimated values can also come in handy.

Unfortunately, most policies do not cover collectibles, expensive artwork, or valuable jewelry. This typically comes at an extra cost. Also, flooding typically isn’t covered, but if you live in a flood zone, flood insurance might be required.

Replacement Cost vs. Cash Value Policy

There are two types to choose from when purchasing a standard homeowners insurance policy: replacement cost and cash value policies. A replacement cost policy is the most viable option for the average homeowner since it pays for the actual cost to repair or replace your home and the items within it. It will at least come pretty close to covering all of the losses.

A cash value policy, however, caps your reimbursement amount with depreciation factored into the equation. While they cost less, they don’t provide as extensive coverage in the event you do need to file a claim.

When Will You Get a Payout?

If you file a claim with your home insurance in South Florida after wind damage from a hurricane, you could get your payout within weeks. Most insurers pay within weeks to six months in the case of a catastrophic event. Of course, any dispute between you and your insurer means the payout will take longer.

Home insurance is important to have in the event of catastrophic damage. If you need to buy house insurance, contact ZK & Associates. As a provider of home insurance in South Florida, we are here to keep your home and all of the important items inside of it covered.