When you buy a homeowners insurance policy, you’re purchasing protection for your family’s safe haven as well as your most valuable asset. A homeowners policy is intended to help you recover from a sudden and accidental loss, likely an expensive one, such as fire, lightning, hail, etc. However, we find that coverage for one peril, water, is sometimes misunderstood.
Water damage is the second most common reason a homeowner will make an insurance claim, and it is often covered. However, that depends on what caused the damage in the first place. The key is in the concept of the damage being “sudden and accidental.” For example, if a pipe bursts or an appliance overflows, flooding your home and damaging it—those things are both sudden and accidental. However, gradual damage, like that which occurs over time from a leaking faucet, would likely not be covered. Homeowners insurance will not cover water damage due to negligence or lack of maintenance. It’s not intended to serve as a vehicle for maintaining your home.
In addition, your homeowners insurance will NOT cover water damage due to:
- Intentional acts.
- Sewer or drain backup (unless you’ve purchased that coverage).
- Leaks from a swimming pool or other structure.
- Ground water seepage.
What about flood damage?
A major concern in Florida is flood damage. Flooding is not covered under a standard homeowners policy. This includes flooding from a hurricane, rising water from overflowing rivers, storm surge, or water from heavy rains. If you need flood coverage, Lakewood Financial can help you get the coverage you need.
Tips to prevent water damage
The best way to prevent water damage is to keep your home in good repair. Here are a few simple things you can do to prevent water damage (see “Fall Maintenance for Your Florida Home” for more suggestions):
- Inspect dishwasher, water heater, and washing machine hoses and replace if necessary.
- Turn off water supply to washing machine and refrigerator when going out of town.
- Monitor your water bill for unexpected increases.
- Install a leak detector/leak sensor, a device which detects and notifies you about leaks.
Lakewood Financial—your source for homeowners insurance
If you have questions about what is or is not covered under your Florida homeowners insurance policy, don’t hesitate to call your insurance agent. And if you need a quote for homeowners insurance, please consider giving Lakewood Financial a call. We understand the importance of finding the right homeowners insurance coverage for your needs. We are an independent insurance agency partnered with many great homeowners insurance companies, and we’d love to help you find the most cost-effective coverage for your individual situation. Please give us a call at 941-747-4600, or request a quote online.