5 Home Insurance Myths You May Have Fallen For

16 Jun
5 home insurance myths you may have fallen for

Believing you are covered for something, and finding out that is not the case when it comes time to make a claim can be financially devastating.

Homeowners insurance can be a bit confusing and like all type of insurance there are a number of myths and misconceptions floating around. A misunderstanding or not having a complete grasp of your coverage can be a very expensive mistake. Believing you are covered for something, and finding out that is not the case when it comes time to make a claim can be financially devastating.

Here are five common myths about homeowners coverage:

1. Exaggerating Your Losses is Acceptable

While it may seem good and fair to overstate the value of your losses when making a claim, it’s not a good idea and it can land you in some pretty hot water if your insurer discovers your deception.

According to experts, if your insurance company suspects you are misrepresenting your claim, all trust in the relationship vanishes and from that point forward, any claim you make will be met with suspicion.

Insurance fraud is a crime in most states and while your insurer may not press charges for overstating then value of a TV, if it is large-scale fraud, you could find yourself faced with some large fines and possible jail time.

It is also possible that your insurer will deny your claim and drop you when renewal time comes around. Before you decide to commit fraud, be aware, insurance adjusters have seen just about every trick in the book and are quite tuned in to less than honest claims.

2. In Home Injuries are Covered

If you are injured at home, don’t expect your homeowners insurance to cover your medical bills. You will need health insurance if you want your hospital or doctor bills to be paid.

The liability portion of your homeowners policy will cover the medical expenses of any guests who are injured at your house or on your property. This doesn’t include your immediate family members.

The majority of homeowner policies include limited “no-fault” medical coverage, usually up to $5,000 that can be used for a guest’s medical expenses. This saves you from tapping the liability section of your policy for relatively small claims.

While health insurance can be expensive, without it, a simple trip on your stairs or slip in your driveway could dramatically change your financial situation.

3. It’s Best to Insure Your Home for Market Value

Insuring your home for the current market value is a mistake. You will end up paying for more insurance than you need, this is especially true in hot markets where home prices are going up quickly.

Insurers recommend covering your home for the amount that it would cost to rebuild the house and replace your belongings in the event of a catastrophic event.

Your insurance agent should be able to help you determine how much it would cost to rebuild your home and steer you to the proper amount of coverage.

4. A Homeowners Policy Covers Everything

A standard homeowners policy may not cover all of your possessions. A typical policy will set limits on certain types of possessions and if your valuables are worth more than the limit, you will be on the hook for the excess.

Jewelry, furs, art and other rare collectibles often fall under these limits. Coverage limits will vary by policy so be sure you have a complete understanding of your policy limits. You can purchase an additional rider that will increase your coverage for collectible and other valuables.

5. My Old House Will Be Cheaper to Insure Than a New One

When looking for a home you may be tempted to buy an older house, assuming it will be cheaper to insure. This is definitely not true, especially if the house is really old.

Construction techniques that are common in older homes can be very expensive to replicate, pushing up the cost of your homeowners insurance. Crown molding, plaster, and stained glass windows are just a few examples of items that are expensive to replace.

While your older home may be chock full of charm, in some cases insurers may refuse to write a policy if they feel it would be too expensive to rebuild or repair if it was destroyed or damaged.

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