Will Homeowners’ Insurance Cover Water Damage Restoration?
Water damage to property can be devastating. The integrity of a building’s structure itself can be compromised. Damage to belongings in the house and the risk of hazards like electrical fires and mold also result from water damage. Water damage is one of the most common and costly types of home insurance claims. According to the Insurance Information Institute, water damage accounts for 29% of all home insurance claims.
Water damage needs to be tackled as soon as possible. Delay causes the damage to worsen when materials are exposed to moisture for longer. A professional water damage restoration company may need to be hired for a speedy and safe resolution to this problem. Proven Restoration LLC offers clean-up and water damage restoration services in the Houston, TX metropolitan area. In this article, some information on home insurance coverage for water damage is shared by Proven Restoration LLC.
It is important that homeowners always understand what their home insurance covers. Clarifying all doubts with the insurance company or agent, and understanding what riders they can purchase additionally is advisable.
Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Water Damage?
Usually, standard homeowner insurance policies cover sudden and accidental water damage. Any water damage claim that is caused due by the negligence of homeowners or failure to maintain and repair the house can be rejected.
Water Damage Covered By Homeowner’s Insurance
Homeowner’s insurance covers sudden and accidental incidents causing water damage.
- Rains and snowstorms
- Burst pipes, frozen pipes, accidental overflows, faulty plumbing
- Water damage occurs when a fire is extinguished
- Leaks from the roofs that occur suddenly (for instance, after a storm, or when branches fall on the roof)
- Accidental leaks from faulty appliances like a broken dishwasher or malfunctioning washing machine. The insurance would usually cover only the water damage restoration costs and not the cost of repairing the appliances
- Ice dams due to ice build-up in gutters provided this happened suddenly and not because of poor maintenance
Water Damage That Would Not Be Covered By Homeowner’s Insurance
Water damage that is not covered by normal homeowner’s insurance includes incidents caused by the following.
- Negligence by homeowners and lack of maintenance result in water damage that homeowners’ insurance will not cover. For example, not turning the heat on in winter results in frozen pipes bursting, which causes water damage that will not be covered by the insurance.
- Water damage caused by floods, tsunamis, hurricanes, etc is not covered by standard homeowner’s insurance policies. A separate flood insurance policy to cover flood damage can be purchased through the National Flood Insurance Program and some private insurance companies.
- Earth movement during landslides, earthquakes, or mudslides can cause earth movement that results in water damage. This water damage will not be covered by homeowner’s insurance, but an earthquake insurance policy will cover such claims.
- Leaking and seepage through the foundation
- Intentional acts that cause water damage
- Gradual leaks and seepage that cause water damage including mold damage
- Backup from a sewer or drain is not typically covered by standard home insurance. Homeowners can purchase coverage, especially for this.
- Replacement or repair cost of faulty appliances that caused water damage cannot be claimed in a standard home insurance policy
- Sump pump failure causing water damage needs separate coverage as it is not included in home insurance
Homeowners must ensure that the insurance company is informed as soon as possible after an incident causing water damage. It is best to document with pictures or videos the damage. Temporary fixes to contain the damage, like using a tarp to stop water from coming in through a roof leak can be done after documenting the damage. Not taking steps to minimize water damage or delaying action can adversely affect an insurance claim.
Mold is common, especially after water damage, and can be expensive to get rid of. But it may not always be covered by home insurance. It may be covered if it is the result of sudden catastrophic situations like burst pipes or an AC system overflow. If the mold is considered as an extension of the covered water damage, the home insurance may cover all or some of the mold removal costs. Homeowners can choose to purchase a floater or endorsement that provides extra coverage for mold to their home insurance policy.
Water damage is more common than most would think. It is best handled by a professional water damage restoration specialist. This will save time and expenses by preventing the worsening of water damage by prolonged exposure to moisture. Proven Restoration LLC provides prompt and reliable assistance to deal with water damage in the Houston metropolitan area. They can be reached at (832) 430-7320 for further queries.