What is Not Covered and Add-ons

There are a few risks that homeowners insurance won’t normally cover.   Here’s a list of what is not covered.  Depending on what you own and where you live, you might need to supplement your policy with special coverage for these:

  • Problems caused by lack of prevention or maintenance.
  • Earth movements, landslides, earthquakes, mudslides, and sinkholes.
  • Flood damage. You may be covered for broken pipes and sewer or drain backups, but flood insurance requires a separate policy.
  • Windstorms.
  • War or terrorism.
  • Home businesses within your home may need a separate policy.
  • Trampolines
  • Jewelry, collections, art, and high priced electronics might require extra protection.
  • Food spoilage.  Some policies will have a small allowance for food but won’t cover a large freezer full.
  • Pools.  Actually, most will cover the pool itself if it meets standards, but most require additional coverage for the risk of injuries.
  • Big boats usually need separate coverage, small boats are sometimes covered.
  • Dogs.  Some companies won’t sell insurance to you if you have certain breeds of dogs.
  • Identity theft is a fairly new issue.  It normally wasn’t even mentioned in policies as either included or excluded, but many policies now are specifying that it is excluded.

Common add-ons include:

  • Flood Insurance (see NFIP). Most homeowners policies do not cover flood damage. Ask your insurance agent about the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), a government program, that offers flood coverage in many areas.
  • Earthquake Insurance is available in a separate policy.
  • Extra Coverage (called an Endorsement). You might want more than standard coverage on certain items such as jewelry, fine arts, camera equipment, coin or stamp collections, computer equipment, and home theater installations.
  • Identity theft insurance.

Personal umbrella liability insurance, or Umbrella policy can provide more liability coverage than a homeowners policy provides.