Homeowners insurance covers serious damage or destruction of your house, but what else is covered? Generally, clothing, furniture, appliances and most other contents of your home are covered if they're destroyed in an insured disaster. You can also get off-premises coverage to file a claim for lost jewelry, no matter where in the world you lost it, although there are typically limits. If you own a lot of high-priced possessions — fine art or antiques, fine jewelry or designer clothes — you may want to purchase a rider or buy a separate policy to cover them. Liability coverage protects you from lawsuits filed by others, so that if your dog bites your neighbor, your insurer will pay her medical expenses.
If you find yourself forced out of your home, you could be reimbursed for rent, hotel room fees, restaurant meals and other incidental costs — although there are limits.
There are essentially three levels of coverage:
What about rates? The frequency and severity of the claims filed on your home play roles in determining your rates. If there have been multiple claims in the past three to seven years, even if a previous owner filed some of them, you'll see a bump in your home insurance premium to the next pricing tier.
Other factors include:
If your home is not well maintained, your rate will be higher. You'll even see higher rates if you have a pup residing at your home. So, what can you do to cut down insurance premiums?
Choosing the right coverage in your homeowners policy will determine whether you'll be able to rebuild your home and replace your personal belongings. Do an annual insurance policy checkup to make sure you're keeping up with local building costs, remodeling costs and inventories of your personal belongings.
Finally, note that these are just general concepts — your experience and situation may vary. Let us know if you have any questions about insurance coverage.
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