We know that homeowners didn’t buy their houses with visions of soggy floors dancing in their heads or sheetrock soaked with rainwater from a roof leak. We are also aware that homeowners who have been in their homes for many comfortable years might have no idea if there is a water damage home insurance paragraph in their home insurance policy. And now they are asking, does homeowners insurance cover water damage?
Water damage is a slippery thing, fraught with wording that confuses, though. To be fair, most disasters are covered, but might not be if the wording is wrong. We thought while some homeowners are facing water damage, we should alert them to what type of water damage home insurance covers.
Water Damage Home Insurance Is Tricky
Water damages and flooding are horses of a different color. Water damage is basically described as what happens within, while flood damages are based on what happens outside.
Flood insurance is available to homeowners living in cities liable to suffering from heavy storms or hurricanes. The same goes for homeowners whose roofs are impacted by trees. The damage to the roof could be covered depending on the wording of the homeowner’s policy.
Any water damage to the inside of the house could be covered as well. Otherwise, if the damages spring from something inside the house, then the homeowner will probably be covered.
But does that include all interior water damage? What about water damage from the exterior of the home to the interior, like that caused by roof damage or cracks in brick?
Exactly What Types Of Water Damage Is Covered?
Before we get to the list of what’s covered and what isn’t, there’s a catch. When the insurance adjuster comes, you’ll need to convince him that whatever went wrong did so itself, due to shoddy manufacture or materials.
If the insurance company thinks you’ve slacked off on your due diligence or not kept up with maintenance, then you’ll be out of luck and out of pocket.
With that said, the list isn’t very long:
What Water Damage Home Insurance Covers
- Frozen and/or burst pipes
Flooding due to burst pipes is the second highest reason for homeowner’s insurance claims behind wind and hail damages. Insurance has you covered.
- Leaking appliances
Appliances suddenly taking on a movie character’s evil personality causing more leaks and damage than people think. Somehow, people miss the water damage capability of dishwashers, washing machines, the water feature in the fridge door, water heaters and more.
- Roof leaks are touchy
If you slipped up on maintenance, then water damages from a roof leak are probably not covered. A catastrophic storm, on the other hand, would probably be covered, because it was outside of your hands.
- Outside influence
Let’s say the catastrophe comes from without. Let’s say the pool leaks and the water floods both the yard and the basement. The basement would be covered, but only if the leak in the pool is due to faulty workmanship or materials.
Types Of Water Damage Home Insurance Does Not Cover
Many homeowners are shocked when they learn that water damage from sewer backups and drain blockages are not covered under their homeowner’s insurance. There are special policies that do cover these eventualities, but most homeowners either don’t know about them or don’t think they’ll ever need them.
What isn’t covered is seepage of any kind from outside water intrusion on the house, such as the creek rising or rainwater seeping into the basement. Damage created by a water leak from sources the homeowner should have kept up with as part of maintenance, such as windows leaks, doors, or anything to do with the foundations or the roof, aren’t covered either.
That is exactly why a waterproofing inspection is so important!
Mold is also a tricky one – it could be covered by your homeowner’s insurance, but it depends on your policy. If the mold was caused by water damage, your insurance should pay out, but if it’s caused by the external damage outlined above, or a simple lack of maintenance, you may find yourself out of pocket as well.
We are here to help you prevent and stop a small leak issue before it becomes a huge leak issue. As you just found out, the type of leaks we find and fix, is not covered by insurance.
This will save you money and protect your investment.