What you need to know about home insurance
Owning a home is the American dream, but if something happens to your home it could be a nightmare, especially if you don’t have the proper coverage. Homeowners insurance is a necessity if you own your home; even if you no longer have a mortgage.
What is it?
A homeowners policy is a type of property casualty insurance. It not only protects your home against damage from things like fire, wind and hail damage, it also offers personal liability protection against things like a visitor to your home sustaining an injury. Homeowners policies also cover the contents of your home.
Who is it for?
Home insurance is for people who own a single-family or townhome and live in it full time. If you own a condo or other residential unit or you rent out your home, you need a different insurance.
How does it work?
Home insurance works like many other types of policies in that you have to make a claim with your insurer if you believe you have damage from a covered event, such as hail or wind damage. Your insurer will send out an adjuster to evaluate the damage. Once your insurer determines that the claim is covered, it either will send you a check for the loss minus your deductible, or it will pay your actual repair bills. If your home is uninhabitable, your policy will pay living expenses while it is being repaired.
Types of coverage
Homeowners policies are usually pretty standard in terms of what they do and do not cover. There are different levels of coverage, and there also are riders you can purchase that will add things that aren’t normally covered by the policy, such as an auxiliary building.
The main benefit of having a homeowners insurance policy is protecting your home and belongings against damage caused by a fire or weather event. An additional benefit is the personal liability coverage that such a policy provides.