Can I make a claim on homeowner’s insurance for frozen pipes?

Most policies will cover the cost of water damage to your home caused by a broken pipe due to freezing as long as the home is heated or the system has been drained and the home winterized. The homeowners policy does not usually cover the cost of repairing the pipe.

Policies do not cover burst pipes due to poor maintenance of the property.

Burst pipes cause many issues within the property structure:

  • sheet rock or plaster deteriorates
  • inadequately drying the interiors of the walls can lead to mold conditions
  • carpets, sheet goods, tiles and other flooring can be damaged
  • studding and framing can rot if not dried thoroughly
  • personal items may be damaged, like furniture and books

It’s important to compare quotes online from an independent agency to fully understand the details of coverage in your State.

Good risk management helps avoid freezing pipes, and therefore, collateral damage. Pipes usually freeze as a result of inadequate insulation or exposure to cold drafts. The freezing water does not break the pipe, the water caught between two ice dams compresses and splits the pipe.

Proper prevention measures include checking all pipes for insulation. Are any pipes exposed to outside air, especially as a draft? If so, cover the pipe with insulation and assure heat is maintained. Turn off and drain pipes with outside bibs. Maintain proper levels of heat in the home.

If the home will be vacant for the winter, turn off the water source and drain the system by opening the lowest spigot. Drain all sink traps that are accessible. Lastly, use a non-toxic antifreeze in all drains to assure traps do not freeze.

Homeowners will reimburse you for damages to your home caused by burst frozen pipes as long as proper precautions are taken to avoid the issue. It will probably not pay for the pipe repair, but will cover the collateral property damage. And, a wise homeowner compares insurance coverage and quotes online from an independent agency.

Keep warm and dry this winter.

How Do I Know if I Have Water Coverage on My Policy?

Water damage is one of the most expensive claims you can make against your homeowner’s insurance policy, short of a total loss of your home. In New York, homeowner’s insurance policies do not cover flooding. However, some types of water damage may be covered by certain insurance policies. To be sure, however, review your policy or call your insurer.

Examples of water damages that may be covered by your homeowner’s insurance policy include burst water pipes, leaking appliances and rain leaks into your home from a damaged roof. It is important to keep in mind, however, that although the water damage to your home from these types of events may be covered by insurance, the actual repairs to the cause of the water damage may not be. For example, if your insurer determines that you failed to properly maintain your roof, which led to a water leak, you may have to pay for roof repairs yourself, while your insurer may pay for the water damage to the structure and contents of your home.

If you need flood insurance – particularly if you live in the New York coastal region or in a flood plain, you’ll need to purchase flood insurance from the National Flood Insurance Program. If you live in one of the more than 1,400 New York communities participating in the program, you can purchase the insurance through private and independent insurance agents. Premiums vary based on coverage amounts and your risk probability. Flood insurance will pay for home repairs and replacement of your home’s contents if your house is damaged by flash flooding due to weather or the overflow of a nearby body of water.

Water Damage

Water DamageMany home insurance companies will not cover for flood damage, but they will cover for other kind of damage caused by water. Insurance companies will generally pay for the damages that is caused by rain coming through hole in a window or roof, provided the hole is caused by winds or other covered exposure which has been listed in the home insurance policy. Check with the insurance company whether they will cover for water damage. If there is any indication of problem caused by water inside your home never ignore it.

Find the source for the leak and stop the leak immediately. If water keeps leaking in your property, then moisture gets collected and mold starts developing in your property. Due to mold, your property could be damaged and further lead to health problems. The health effects caused due to mold exposure are cough, running nose, nosebleeds, sinusitis, congestion and respiratory problems such as bronchitis or asthma. Your home insurance company will consider the damages caused by mold only if, this is a covered peril. Report the water damage claim immediately to the insurance company representative or insurance agent.

By chance your house is flooded with water suddenly, it is very important that you dry all the wet areas. Provide sufficient air circulation so that the wet areas dry soon. Dehumidifying and drying wet areas can minimize the occurrence of mold. Delay in cleaning up can conclude in growth of mold. If the water keeps leaking continuously for a week or more, mold would have been already developed. If you try to clean the mold at this point of time, mold spores may spread out to cause health problems and property damage. As the mold is very dangerous to health, do mold testing and mold cleanup as soon as the mold is detected. After the leakage, if you doubt presence of mold, call up your home insurance adjuster immediately.

Tailored home insurance for home owners

Tailored NeedsHomeowners insurance policies are designed for benefit of the owner to protect homes from a loss. They often cover the structure of the home, by determining a dollar amount for rebuilding in case of damage, and any detached buildings located of the premises, such as sheds or garages. Personal property is also covered under the basic structure of the home policy as well as loss of use; which pays for a family to live at another home while the home is being worked on. A homeowners policy can also be tailored to the needs of the owner by adding endorsements to the basic coverages

  • Valuable items coverage. The policy owner can endorse expensive items, such as artwork, jewelry, and even computers on the policy for the valued amount.
  • Water backup coverage. Will protect a house from water damage from water backing up into the house through a drain or an overflow from a sink or tub.
  • Mold coverage. This may be an expensive endorsement, but it protects home in Texas from mold damage and clean up.
  • Ordinance coverage. Older homes that are being rebuilt will sometimes have to be built according to current building codes. For example, in a city in which houses must be built a certain distance from the street, a older home may have to be moved back. Ordinance coverage pays for the home to be built to code in addition to the cost of rebuilding from a loss.