Backups, overflows, and floods – do you know the difference between them? Water damage can occur in many different ways, and not all of them are covered by your homeowners insurance. So what would you do if you came home to standing water in your house? Would your insurance cover the cost, or would you get stuck with a big bill? Continue reading to learn differences in water-related losses and how you can protect yourself against nearly any scenario.
The Homeowners Policy
The typical homeowners insurance policy includes exclusions for certain types of losses. When it comes to water damage, coverage is not one-size-fits-all. When you file a claim for a water-related loss, the insurance company will investigate to determine how the loss occurred. This is because homeowners insurance generally covers damages caused by overflow and discharge incidents, but not those caused by water backups or flooding.
A water overflow occurs when water flows outside of the boundaries inside your home. This might occur if you forget about a faucet running in the bathtub or if the toilet handle sticks and allows water to overflow onto the floor. In most cases, these types of damages are covered by your homeowners insurance policy less your deductible.
When water is accidentally or suddenly discharged into your home, it may be covered by homeowners insurance. Examples of water discharge include a frozen pipe that bursts or a dislodged appliance hose that allows water to flow into through your kitchen and laundry room.
Backups occur when something causes waste water to flow backward through your drainage pipes and into your home. This could be caused by a sewage line that becomes overfilled after a rain storm. It could also be caused by a blockage in your drain lines, such as an invasive tree root or a clog that will prevent waste flow away from your home. Backups are not typically covered under a standard homeowners insurance policy.
Flooding is defined as an accumulation of surface water across at least two acres that are normally dry. When these waters rise from the ground over the foundation of your home, the damage costs can add up very quickly. Homeowners insurance does not cover flooding.
Suggested Water Damage Coverage
Water damage can be one of the most expensive types of damage to repair, with just a few inches of water resulting in tens of thousands of dollars in cleanup, repair, and replacement costs. While homeowners insurance is a good start, it still contains coverage exemptions that leave you vulnerable to risk. For that reason, we recommend contacting us at Feivor Insurance to discuss water backup and flood insurance.
Sewer and water backup coverage is provided in the form of an endorsement that is added to your homeowners insurance policy. Flood insurance, on the other hand, is only available as a separate insurance policy offered through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). These policies are available to people in low, moderate, and high-risk areas. If you live outside a high-risk area, you can still benefit from flood insurance. In fact, one in five flood insurance claims come from people in low and moderate-risk areas. You can find out more about your flood risk by visiting the FEMA Flood Map Service Center.
There is a 30-day waiting period for NFIP policies to go into effect, so do not delay getting the coverage you need. Call us today. We look forward to serving you soon.
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