Your home insurance plan is extremely important as it protects your greatest asset. Here are the basics your home insurance plan should cover:
Property damage coverage is extremely important as it protects what is most likely your most important physical asset if it were to ever be damaged from fire, wind, hail, etc. Check with your insurance company to determine what types of damages are covered. Then decide if you require further coverage for events such as floods or earthquakes. There are a number of levels you can add to your coverage including:
- Coverage A: This covers damages to your actual home.
- Coverage B: This covers additional structures on your property such as a detached garage or shed.
- Coverage C: This is your personal property within your home such as electronics, jewellery, clothing and furniture.
- Coverage D: This is important as it covers any additional living expenses when you are unable to live in your home due to extensive damage from an insured peril (i.e. fire, wind, sewer back up, etc.). The living expenses would only cover the hotel or home rental. You may also be reimbursed for a partial amount of the meals you eat in restaurants if you have to stay in a hotel. This money would pay the difference between the cost of a restaurant meal and what you would usually pay out for groceries.
- Coverage E: This covers personal injury lawsuits if someone has an accident on your property. It can also cover law suits resulting from damages you cause negligently to someone else’s property.
Replacement and Reimbursement
You have a choice between replacement value and actual cash value for reimbursement from your home insurance plan. The differences are as follows:
- Replacement Value: Replacement value means the home insurance plan will replace the damaged goods with a new item similar to the one lost. This can include rebuilding an entire home or a single window damaged by kids playing street hockey.
- Actual cash value: This is not as desirable as replacement value as reimbursement factors in depreciation of each item. Therefore, a 20 year old building that is completely destroyed by fire will not receive as much reimbursement as a 5 year old building completely destroyed by fire if they are of similar size and layout.
Your home insurance plan should factor in these details in order to make it easier to get your life back on track following a catastrophic event.