There are two main sections to any home insurance policy you purchase: civil liability and property insurance.
This coverage protects you financially for property damage and bodily injury that you may unintentionally cause to others. If you’re sued for such damages, your insurer will defend you. Should you be held liable, your insurer will compensate those who have suffered the damage.
Insuring your belongings
A home insurance policy also covers all of your belongings. You can determine the amount of insurance required to cover all your possessions by making an inventory.
If you’re a homeowner, your residence is also covered under your policy. You must determine the amount of insurance required to cover it, which must be equal to its reconstruction value. Your broker or agent can help you, but you’re ultimately responsible for determining this amount.
How accurate should you be in estimating the cost of rebuilding your home?
The amount of money allocated to the reconstruction of your home cannot exceed the amount of insurance chosen in your contract. That’s why it’s important to properly assess the reconstruction value of your residence when purchasing your home insurance.
Types of contracts
With home insurance, you can choose your insurance policy based on the extent of coverage you want. Do you want to be insured for all types of risks or for specific risks? The number of incidents covered by your policy will vary based on your decision.
Regardless of the policy you choose, be aware that the following are generally covered:
- Fire or forest fires
- Theft or attempted theft
- Discharge or overflow of public water mains carrying drinking water
- Discharge or overflow of plumbing systems or appliances such as bathtubs, toilets, washing machines or dishwashers
- Explosion and smoke
- Impact from objects or vehicles
Other incidents are not:
- Landslides and other earth movements
- Damage to property illegally acquired
- Losses caused by criminal acts of the insured
- Losses due to war, terrorism, nuclear risks
Water damage: an additional coverage
Some types of damages are not automatically covered in a home insurance policy but may be added by means of an endorsement to the policy. This is the case for damage caused by water infiltration, sewer back-up or the overflowing of a body of water. It’s important to consider additional coverage because these types of incidents are common.
Who is protected under your policy?
A home insurance policy covers the liability and property of the insureds named in the policy. An insured’s spouse and family members, as well as the spouse’s family members, are also insured under the policy if the spouses are married or have been living together in a conjugal relationship for at least one year. Other individuals are also considered insured, such as minors under 18 in the custody of an insured.
Is your new spouse moving in with you? Do you have a new roommate? It’s important to have their name added to your contract so that their property and liability are adequately insured.