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If you don’t pay much attention to your homeowners insurance policy, it could pay to take a closer look. Fortunately, a knowledgeable agent can help explain your coverage and adjust it to what you need and want.
As you take the time to review your policy, here are some benefits you may not know about homeowners insurance.
Both your house and its contents are insured
Understanding the difference between your house structure and its contents will help you read your policy, said State Farm agent Pam Hansen Alfred, who is based in Great Falls.
“The home itself is covered, so the physical structure is covered, and also the contents are covered,” she said. “What’s the difference? If you were the Jolly Green Giant and turned that house upside down, whatever came out is personal property and whatever is left is part of the structure itself.”
You are covered when you can’t live in your house
If you temporarily have to move because your house is damaged, loss of use coverage will pay for your time away.
“If your home is damaged or destroyed, we will pay you to live elsewhere while it’s being rebuilt or repaired,” Alfred said. “There’s oftentimes some extra costs associated with that, like extra eating out, and those types of things are also covered under loss of use.”
You can protect multiple structures
In addition to your house, you can insure structures such as a detached garage or fence.
“In a package policy, you would get your other structures, or we call them dwelling extensions, covered for 10% of the home price,” Alfred said.
You are covered away from home
Personal property is covered anywhere in the world, not just inside your house, Alfred said.
“If you were taking a trip and property was stolen from your car, it would be covered,” she said. “So, if I take my laptop on a trip with me and it gets stolen, that is covered under my home insurance.”
You won’t go broke when accidents happen
Liability coverage provides protection if you’re at fault for someone being injured on your property, Alfred said.
“If you have kids, a child could push a buddy off the trampoline, and they break their arm,” she said. “Or the dog would bite the mail carrier.”
Homeowners insurance can also cover damage from certain events, like a water heater bursting.
“We don’t cover the hot water heater itself, but we cover the damage that happens as a result of the hot water heater,” Alfred said. “Or, let’s say you’ve got a really old roof on a house and then, all of a sudden, the hail comes through. You don’t think that you get a new roof because it was already damaged. We will still pay for you to have a brand new roof if your current roof gets damaged in a hailstorm.”
Your guests can get medical care
Guest medical coverage is one many people don’t know about, but it is helpful when a visiting family member or friend hurts themselves.
“If someone gets hurt on your premises, regardless of fault, most policies will pay for injuries that need medical attention,” Alfred said. “In that situation, there’s no negligence, so there’s no liability claim. It just says someone got hurt on your premises. It doesn’t pay for the people that live there. It just pays for people who are guests.”
Learn more about homeowners insurance coverage or create a personalized quote at pamhansenalfred.com.