Is Water Damage Covered on My Homeowners Insurance Policy?
If you come across water damage in your home one of the first thoughts that cross your mind is how am I going to pay for this? Thankfully, some instances of water damage are covered on your standard homeowners insurance policy. Of course, most homeowners will have this coverage due to it being required when you buy a home. In fact, nearly every lender will refuse to provide financing unless you have a homeowners insurance policy. However, there are instances where your policy will not cover water damage. Most homeowners never know one way or another until they experience their first water-related claim. Craig Harrell, a public insurance adjuster, explores this topic so you know ahead of time the types of water damage covered under homeowners insurance.
Let’s Explore The 3 Types Of Water Damage.
Understanding what type of water damage you are dealing with makes it easier for you to properly file a claim. Water damage has different classifications based on the number of contaminants in the water. The more contaminants that are present, the more extensive the repair and restoration will be. This is information your homeowners insurance company will request when you file a water damage insurance claim.
The Three Types of water damage are:
Clear – Clear water damage is considered free of contaminants. Clear water is not a threat to the health of those who encounter it, but long term or reoccurring issues related to clear water damage can be dangerous
Grey – Grey water damage contains some contaminants. Grey water is often from pipes, leaking dishwashers, dripping washing machines, and overflowing bathtubs.
Black – Black water damage is the most contaminated type of water and should be dealt with immediately by a qualified restoration professional. Black water is most commonly an issue when a toilet or septic line ruptures, water is stagnant after a long-term leak, or runoff from a flooded body of water has entered your home.
What You Need to Know About Homeowners Insurance
The average homeowner’s insurance policy covers specified risks. These are often referred to as covered perils when written about in your homeowner’s insurance policy. The type of water damage affecting your home, and how the damage was incurred, are the major deciding factors in determining if your insurance policy will cover the repairs. A typical homeowner’s policy covers the following types of water damage:
- Overflows from a sudden water leak or pipe burst
- Water heater failure
- Sudden damage to an appliance, such as a dishwasher, air conditioner, or washing machine
- Water damage from efforts by the fire department to extinguish a fire at your home
Meanwhile, most homeowner’s insurance policies specifically exclude coverage for multiple types of water damage. Craig Harrell, a trusted public insurance adjuster in Florida, has experienced that most standard homeowners insurance policies do not cover the following:
Is Water Damage from Floods Covered by Florida Homeowners Insurance?
Flooding that occurs due to heavy rain or a flooded body of water is often not covered by Florida homeowner’s insurance policies. The term “flood damage” in the insurance world usually pertains to waters involved in natural flooding incidents like rain or hurricanes. Even though water damage from burst pipes and overflowing bathtubs might flood your home, this technically isn’t considered actual flood damage by insurance companies. Flood insurance is a seperate insurance policy altogether can be purchased in addition to your homeowners insurance policy.
Is Water Damage from Sewers and Sump Pumps by Florida Homeowners Insurance?
A backed up sump pump or busted sewer drain can be a disaster but it usually is not part of the coverage in a typical homeowner’s insurance policy. Instead, an insurance rider would have to be added to your policy to cover such damages.
Is Water Damage Due To Neglect by Florida Homeowners Insurance?
Most homeowners insurance policies cover risks from incidents that are considered “Sudden or Accidental”, and often from isolated incidents. For example, a pipe that has been leaking for several months causes mold, drywall and flooring damage would not be covered. However a sudden pipe burst that ruins flooring and drywall would be covered.
The Ins & Outs of Water Damage Coverage Under Florida Homeowners Insurance
We know this can be a lot of information to take in a short amount of time. That is why Harrell Adjusting Services is here to help you with your water damage insurance claim every step of the way. If you are confused or stressed about your claim, give us a call. We will review your policy and let you know if your situation falls under a covered peril. In addition we can let you know what actions can be taken to recover your damages. Or maybe you’ve already started a claim and you have questions that your insurance company is not answering. Whatever your situation, Harrell Adjusting Services can provide guidance. Conveniently located in Central Florida, we work with clients anywhere in the Sunshine State. For more information, give Harrell Adjusting Services a call at (863) 559-3405 to schedule a consultation.