Homeowners Coverages – The typical homeowners insurance policy covers the house, the garage and other structures on the property, as well as personal possessions inside the house such as furniture, appliances and clothing, against a wide variety of perils including windstorms, fire and theft. The extent of the perils covered depends on the type of policy. Check the policy for any limits on special items such as jewelry, firearms, musical instruments and collectibles.
The liability portion of the policy covers the homeowner for accidental injuries caused to third parties and/or their property, such as a guest slipping and falling down improperly maintained stairs. Coverage for flood and earthquake damage is excluded and must be purchased separately.
When shopping for a homeowner policy, it is best to make sure that your personal property to covered on an all peril basis versus a named peril basis. In addition, be sure your policy uses replacement cost versus actual cash value when replacing your personal items.
Renters Coverages – This type of policy covers an individual that rents an apartment, home or mobile home. This policy covers both personal property as well as liability.
Condominium Coverages – These policies are designed to cover the property and liability of a condominium unit owner. This policy is very similiar to a homeowner policy with a few exceptions. When determining the coverage needed, one must review the association policy to insure proper coverage.
Mobile Home Coverages – Mobile Home Coverages provide package insurance for a mobile home risk comparable to that provided by a homeowners policy for a conventional dwelling, subject to some modifications. Since numerous familiar “contents” items can be permanently installed, built in or attached to the home and insured under dwelling coverage, the same items can be removed from personal property coverage and those limits reduced accordingly.
Farmowner-Ranchowner Coverages – Package policies can be designed to protect the policyholder against named perils and liabilities and usually covers homes and their contents, along with barns, stables and other structures. In addition, coverage for equipment, crops and livestock are available.
Flood Insurance – Coverage for flood damage is available from the federal government under the National Flood Insurance Program but is sold by licensed insurance agents. Flood coverage is excluded under homeowners policies and many commercial property policies. However, flood damage is covered under the comprehensive portion of an auto insurance policy. Flood insurance can be purchased to cover both the dwelling and contents.
Earthquake Coverages – Covers a building and its contents, but includes a large percentage deductible on each. A special policy or endorsement exists because earthquakes are not covered by standard homeowners or most business policies.
Automobile Insurance – There are basically six different types of auto coverages. Some may be required by law. Others are optional. They include:
- Bodily injury liability, for injuries the policyholder causes to someone else.
- Medical payments or Personal Injury Protection (PIP) for treatment of injuries to the driver and passengers of the policyholder’s car.
- Property damage liability, for damage the policyholder causes to someone else’s property.
- Collision, for damage to the policyholder’s car from a collision.
- Comprehensive, for damage to the policyholder’s car not involving a collision with another car (including damage from fire, explosions, earthquakes, floods, riots, and theft).
- Uninsured motorist’s coverage, for costs resulting from an accident involving a driver who does not have insurance.
Also available on an auto policy are roadside assistance as well as rental car coverage in case of a claim and the insured needs to rent a car while the vehicle is being repaired. There are additional coverages available including glass coverage and OEM parts.
Collectible Automobile Insurance – A specialized auto policy that covers vehicles regarded as collectible. This type of coverage offers stated value coverage usually with no deductible.
Boats & Watercraft – Watercraft insurance coverages go beyond the scope of a standard homeowners policy and can sometimes include Roadside Assistance, which covers towing of your boat or personal watercraft. You may also be offered Fuel Spill Liability and Wreckage Removal coverage. Without these watercraft insurance coverages, you may end up getting stuck with the bill for cleanups and removals. Personal Effects and Fishing Equipment coverages are also available in some policies. The coverages available are similiar to auto coverage: bodily injury, property damage, uninsured boater, medical payments and comp and collision.
Recreational Vehicles – RV insurance can protect your investment from top to bottom. With RV insurance, you can select all sorts of coverage, including Vacation Liability, Full Timer’s, Emergency Expense and more. Your RV insurance policy protects your traveling companions and your valuables when you’re on a trip.
Motorcycle/Snowmobile/Golf Cart – These policies cover personal liability as well as comprehensive and collision to personally owned vehicles. Other coverage available include roadside assistance and accessory coverage.
Umbrella Coverage – If a claim exceeds the liability limit on one of the policies listed under the umbrella, then the umbrella provides the additional amount of liability protection needed up to the policy limit and may offer additional protection that you cannot get with a standard home or auto policy. Be aware of the liability insurance requirements of the underlying policies when shopping for an umbrella policy.
Event Coverage – When a family decided to hold a special event, such as a wedding or party, the family may wish to purchase an event policy to cover the event. This type of policy usually has higher limits than a homeowner policy and may be required if holding an event at a location other than your home.