Home insurance is there to help you protect your house in the event of an emergency. While you may view several expensive and unexpected jobs as emergencies, they may not fall under your home insurance policy's list of covered events. It is important to know what is and is not covered before you attempt to file a claim. Here are three things your home insurance does not cover and why.
Busted Ancient Pipes
Pipes that are metal and very old will eventually fail. As these busted relics of another era produce a ton of water damage within a short time, and the expense to replace the pipes and clean up the mess is enormous, you may be tempted to call the insurance company. Unless the pipes were frozen and burst, you cannot file a claim. The insurance company actually considers this a "home maintenance issue" and not something covered under the policy.
Unless your roof collapsed under unnatural circumstances, such as large objects falling from the sky or damage caused by a tornado, it is not covered by most insurance policies.
Most of the other reasons for a collapsed roof include:
- Dry rot
- Mold and mildew
- Termites or other wood-chewing insects
- Bats and their feces/urine
- Roof that should have been replaced years ago
All of the above, with the exception of a poorly installed roof that causes mold/mildew, are not covered by home insurance. Again, your insurance agent would consider all of these causes of a collapsed roof to be home maintenance issues.
Giant Holes in the Walls
Giant holes in the walls as a result of cracking and falling plaster is also not covered by homeowner's insurance. Even if the cracks were not the result of someone falling into them and the cracks just appeared one day, homeowner's insurance will not cover it. Again, this is viewed as something you should have addressed when you first noticed the problem.
Understanding Why the Above Things Are Not Covered
Homeowner's insurance is for emergency situations caused by weather, acts of God, and situations over which you have/had absolutely no control and no expectation to fix. Improper installation of home systems or parts, such as a poor roof installation or poor installation of new pipes that results in continued leaks and damage are covered, too. When the damage is caused by another person not living in your home or the previously mentioned causes, then you can file a claim.