How Do Home Insurance Policies Handle Natural Disasters?

You probably want to ensure that your brand new home purchase is secured from any potential nightmares, such as a fire or a flood. Here is what you must look into to get the right coverage.

It Will Likely Be Supplemental

For most natural disasters, your coverage is going to require a supplement to your basic home insurance policy. Yes, unfortunately, you can't get the most rock bottom rates and still be covered when that flood hits. Still, you can negotiate with your insurer to get the best rates on supplemental insurance policies.

Look into Necessary Documents

For example, flood elevation certificates are an important part of getting flood insurance, and they must be accurate in order for the insurance to be valid. Choose a good service provider to get any prerequisite documents you will need.

Natural Disasters Are Classified in Specific Terms

You should also look at the policy to make sure you're covered for exactly what you think you are. You might notice, for example, that your basic home insurance policy already has coverage for "fires". These are likely to be limited to fires that result from things like home appliances being left on or the stove catching fire. Wildfires are generally excluded from this coverage.

On the other hand, you might buy supplemental insurance for floods, thinking it covers all types of floods, only to discover that your coverage is limited to natural flooding. When your basement then floods due to a plumbing pipe burst, you are left without help. So, just be sure that you read the classifications in your insurance coverage and feel comfortable with what you're getting. Don't feel bad for going over specific gray area cases with your insurance representative so that you fully understand what you're getting.

Be Aware of Coverage You Don't Need

While you may be thinking mostly about how to get coverage for incidents that are likely to happen, also make sure you're not paying for things you don't need. Scour your home insurance policy for coverage for natural disasters that aren't very common in your area.  

You Can Adjust Your Coverage

The great thing about natural disaster coverage is that it's on your terms. You don't always have to insurance your home to the hilt when a fire strikes; you could adjust your deductibles or coverage limits for these specific scenarios. That makes it much more affordable to get at least some insurance coverage for any kind of natural disasters that you feel vulnerable to. You might get full coverage for floods and limited coverage for hurricane damage, for instance. It's up to you, but a more robust home insurance policy is likely to be worth it due to your peace of mind.

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