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Homeowner Insurance –
An Overview of Your Coverage and Benefits

Homeowner insurance offers protections to individuals against unforeseen catastrophes.The insured party will be covered for personal loss, or against any third party claims for remuneration.

Bricks and mortar insurance

Having home insurance is not compulsory, however mortgage companies, virtually without exception, insist that borrowers have full insurance coverage of the building before they’ll consider authorising a purchase loan.

Both the property buyer and the mortgage company have a vested financial interest in the ‘bricks and mortar’; unforeseen damage to the property could spell financial disaster for both parties.That’s why in-surance for the building’s structure is virtually compulsory.

In general terms the insurance will cover damage to the interior and exterior structure of the property. Most insurance policies, not all, will cover properties against damage caused by:

• Fire, high winds, lightening and other like, specified, disasters
• Vandalism; this is usually a standard insert

Extra cover in event of a disaster not listed in the policy can be negotiated and subsequently included. There may be a charge.

Not covered

• Damage caused to annex buildings, sheds, garages or other freestanding structures.They may have to be added to the policy.

• Damage caused by flooding, earthquakes or acts of war. These are sometimes omitted from the policy, especially if the insured lives in a ‘wet, quake or conflict torn zone’.

• Damaged caused by DIY, or building/structural alterations.

Your homeowner insurance can be adapted to include caveats for coverage against other specific events.Your insurance provider will advise.

Leaving home

Homeowner insurance will cover all reasonable costs for the insured to live elsewhere, pending rebuild or repair.This will include reasonable accommodation charges, bed and breakfast, short term rental etc.

Homeowner insurance – personal property in the home

This generally relates to the loss of, or damage to, personal property within the home. Usually covering, furniture, appliances and any other item of personal property.

The small print will highlight items not covered or items that may be subject to a limited pay-out. Expen-sive items such as jewellery and antiques are examples of personal belongings that may be subject to re-stricting clauses.

It may be the case that a new policy will be required for certain specific valuable items.Your insurance agent will advise.

Homeowner insurance – personal property away from the home

Homeowner insurance policies will cover property away from the premises; items will probably have to be specified in the relevant document.An expensive camera or jewellery perhaps; things that a person would normally carry with them. However, there may be restriction on the amount that can claimed for their loss or damage.

Homeowner insurance – personal liability

Personal liability benefits are that the insured, or any other family member, will have liability coverage against any claim made in respect of damage or injuries, they may cause to a third party. This will cover accidents away from your property; little Sidney puts a football through Mrs Jones’s front window, this event will be covered.A slate blows off the roof and damages a parked car, homeowner in-surance has it covered.

The insurance may well cover family pets; the dog bites a neighbour, no problem, homeowner insurance will cover all the neighbour’s medical fees.

In conclusion

The benefits of having homeowner insurance are that the homeowner is protected against financial liabil-ity in the event of some unforeseen disaster.