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Home Insurance
Home Insurance

Why do I need Home Insurance?

When you own a home, there is always a risk that it can be damaged or destroyed by fire, windstorm, hail, falling objects like trees, aircrafts, water damage due to rupture of water pipes, sewer backup, vandalism, theft/break in etc. You can buy an insurance product to transfer your risks to the insurance company. Now, if you have a mortgage on the house you don’t have a choice. Your lender wants to make sure that you have insurance to get the house replaced or repaired. Your risk in the house is up to the amount of equity in the house. The rest of the risk is the lender's. They want to make sure that you protect their risk/interest.

What are the Coverages?

Dwelling/Building:

This is the coverage amount you need to rebuild/replace your home in a total loss. This amount includes debris removal. The insurance company evaluates this coverage amount by taking the information from you regarding the house. For the evaluation they need to know the square footage of your home, the number of washrooms, type of built, age of the house, features like number of garages, number of washrooms, whether the basement is finished or unfinished, types of flooring etc. This evaluated amount called the “Dwelling or building coverage” is the replacement value of your house. This dwelling value does not include the land value and is not the market or resale value of the house. Once you have accepted the replacement value as evaluated by the insurance company, the company will guarantee the replacement of the house. What that means is that the insurance company, at the time of a covered loss, will replace the house even if it costs them more than the evaluated dwelling coverage. For example if the evaluation of your house is at $300,000 and it costs the insurance company $350,000 to replace the house at the time of the covered loss, they will not ask you for an extra $50,000 to replace the house.
Rest of the coverages are a percentage of the main dwelling coverage.

Detached/Private Structures:

This coverage applies to all structures other than the main building. For example fence, tool shed, gazebo etc.

Contents:

This coverage applies to all your furniture and household stuff. For example sofas, TVs, clothing, dining set etc. There are special limits for jewelry, furs, silverware, cash as well as some other items. Please refer to your policy for the special limits as these vary from company to company and policy form to policy form.

Additional Living Expenses:

This provides coverage for any additional expense you might incur after a covered loss. For example, living in a hotel or renting another house while your house is being repaired or rebuilt after a covered loss.

Liability:

This coverage protects you if others sue you for damage or losses (property damage, injury, death) they suffer on your property for which you are legally responsible. Your insurance company will pay for your legal defense costs and pay others up to your liability coverage limit if you are found legally responsible. For example, the mail man comes on your property and you have not cleared the snow and he/she slips and falls and is injured.

Endorsements.

There are other endorsements like sewer back up, single limit of insurance that can be added to your policy.
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