With the permission of iii.org
Homeowners' coverage provides financial protection against losses due to disasters, theft and accidents. Most standard policies cover four key types of coverage: coverage for the structure of your home; coverage for your personal belongings; liability protection; coverage for extra living costs
Coverage for the structure of your home
Your homeowner pays to repair or rebuild your home if it is damaged or destroyed by fire, hurricane, hail, lightning or other disasters specified in your policy. Most insurance policies also cover free-standing structures such as a garage, tool shed or gazebo ̵
A standard policy will not pay for damages caused by a flood, earthquake or routine wear and tear.
When buying coverage for the structure of your home, remember this simple guideline: Buy enough coverage to rebuild your home.
Coverage for your personal belongings  Your furniture, clothing, sports equipment and other personal items are covered if they are stolen or destroyed by fire, hurricane or other insured disasters. The coverage is generally 50 to 70 percent of the insurance you have on the structure of the house.
The best way to determine if coverage is sufficient is to take an inventory at home. -price – this means you are covered anywhere in the world. Some companies limit the amount to 10 percent of the insurance amount you have for your assets. You also have up to $ 500 in coverage for unauthorized use of your credit cards.
Expensive items such as jewelry, furs, art, collectibles and cutlery are covered, but there are usually dollar limits if they are stolen. To insure these items to their full value, purchase a special personal property insurance or floating and insure the item for its officially valued value.
Trees, plants and shrubs are also covered by a standard insurance for homeowners – generally for about $ 500 per item. Trees and plants are not covered by disease or if they have been poorly maintained.
Liability covers you against lawsuits for bodily injury or damage to property that you or family members cause to other people. It also pays for damages caused by your pets. So if your son, daughter (or even your dog) accidentally destroys a neighbor's expensive rug, you're covered. (If they destroy your carpet, however, you're lucky.)
The liability part of your insurance pays both the cost of defending you in court and any court decisions – up to the limit stated in your insurance documents.
Liability limits usually start at around $ 100,000, but it is a good idea to discuss whether to purchase a higher level of protection with your insurer. If you have significant assets and want more coverage than is available to your homeowner, consider purchasing an umbrella or overriding liability policy, which provides wider coverage and higher liability limits.
Your insurance also provides medical coverage without error, so if a friend or neighbor is injured in your home, he or she can simply send medical bills to your insurance company. In this way, costs can be paid without any liability claims being made against you. However, it does not pay medical bills for your own family or your pet.
Additional Cost of Living (ALE)
ALE pays the extra cost of living away from home if you are unable to live there due to damage from an insured disaster. It covers hotel bills, restaurant meals and other costs, in addition to your usual living costs, that arise when your home is rebuilt. limitation. However, these limits are separate from the amount available to rebuild or repair your home. Even if you use your ALE, your insurance company will still pay the full cost of rebuilding your home up to the insurance limit.
If you rent out part of your house, ALE will also cover you for the rent you would have collected. from your tenant if your home had not been destroyed.
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