Your home insurance policy gives you a lot of protection and peace of mind. From storm damage to fire and smoke damage to vandalism and even theft, a homeowner's insurance policy should have you covered. But what about pests? One common question homeowners have is whether home insurance will cover damage to a home caused by wood-eating insects, such as termites. The answer isn't so simple, and it will ultimately depend on your exact coverage.
When Termite Damage Is Not Covered
In general, home insurance policies do not cover termite damage or similar events because these are considered to be preventable. With an annual termite inspection and treatment, you can keep your home free of termites and many other problematic pests. It's also important to consider that home insurance is designed to protect you from damage that occurs to your home suddenly. Termite damage, however, is usually something that occurs very slowly and gradually.
When Termite Damage May Be Covered
Of course, there may be exceptions. Your home insurance carrier may cover expenses related to termite damage if you can prove that the damage was caused by a covered incident. For example, if a sudden pipe bursting in your wall led to moist conditions that attracted termites to your home and caused rapid damage, this may be covered (minus your deductible, of course). However, you should expect that your insurance agent will request documentation and proof that this is, in fact, what caused the damage in the first place before cutting you a check.
What to Do If Your Home Has Termite Damage
Unfortunately, termites cause about $5 billion in property damage annually--and it's not always covered by insurance. As a homeowner, it's important to look for signs of termites around your home. This includes:
If you notice any of these signs inside or outside your home, your best bet is to call a pest control company to assess the situation. If caught early, termite problems can often be mitigated inexpensively. And, of course, if you believe the damage could have been caused by a covered incident, don't hesitate to reach out to your insurance agent to see if you might be covered. From there, you can make sure that your home is pest-free and that you're not paying any more than you need to.
To learn more, contact a home insurance agency.
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