Water Damages: Are You Covered By Your Insurance Policy?
Water damage is one of the leading causes of home insurance claims, accounting for 50% of home claims filed. In the event of flooding and sewer backups, it can be costly for homeowners and difficult to recover from. To avoid the stress and financial burden of dealing with extensive water damage, it’s important for homeowners to understand what their water damage coverage includes.
We are committed to making sure that our clients are always prepared and that their home is adequately protected. Here’s what homeowners need to know about water damage and what is included in their insurance policy.
What is Water Damage?
The first step to understanding what your policy protects you from is knowing exactly what ‘water damage’ is referred to on a standard home insurance policy. Many people assume that their home insurance policy covers water damage; however, there are different types of water damage that may or may not be included in a standard insurance policy.
Policies may cover: (with exclusions/guidelines caused by freezing during the usual heating season):
- The sudden and accidental escape of water from a water main
- Water that enters your dwelling through an opening which has been created suddenly and accidentally by an Insured Peril other than water damage
- When sudden and accidental escape of water or steam from within a plumbing, heating, sprinkler, air conditioning system or domestic water container which is located inside your dwelling.
Remember, every policy differs and there are certain limitations for these situations. If you’re unclear about this area of your home insurance policy, it’s best to speak to our experienced brokers. There are always exclusions and limitations in an insurance policy to be aware of.
Optional Water Damage Coverage
Damage caused by sewer backup includes any water coming into your home from pipes, drains, eaves troughs, downspouts, or septic tanks. While there are various reasons why sewer backup occurs, the most common is when the city sewage system is overwhelmed by rain or melting snow.
Alberta homeowners need to be aware that insurance coverage for sewer backup is optional, however, it is highly recommended. We help homeowners choose the best route by comparing the cost of this optional feature on your home insurance policy against the potential financial liabilities of sewer backup damage.
Coverage for water damage caused by the overflow of a lake or river, heavy rain or rapid snowmelt that enters your home from a point at or above ground level is usually referred to as Overland Water. Insurance companies vary in the type of coverage they will offer, be sure to check with your broker to find out what coverage and limits you may be eligible for.
The sudden and accidental entrance of groundwater into your dwelling or additional buildings through basement walls, foundations or floors; rising of the water table.
How can you protect your home and your belongings?
Your home is your most valuable asset, so it’s worth making sure that it’s properly protected. Home insurance policies can be complex and difficult to navigate. We help our clients gain clarity about the different options and limitations when it comes to their water damage coverage.
Our professional and friendly insurance brokers take the time to consider unique situations, including:
- Your city’s climate and geography
- The procedure involved for adding valuables like jewellery and antiques to your coverage
- Discussing prevention and mitigation measures such as sump pumps or sewer backwater valves
In closing, be sure you know what you are and aren’t covered for under your insurance policy’s water damage section. If you’re unsure, connect with us and we can guide you through it.
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