What Is Homeowners Insurance and What Does It Cover?

What is homeowners insurance?

You’ve heard this time and time again: your home is your biggest investment. But it’s true, and it’s why you need to protect it. The best way you can protect your home and everything it stands for—such as the life you’ve built for you and your loved ones—is with homeowners insurance.

What is home insurance?

Home insurance is an investment in protecting your property and family. It covers your assets in case of damage from emergencies, such as fires and flooding, and crimes like theft. Without home insurance, you’re left to pay for the extensive repair and replacement costs, which can quickly deplete the savings you’ve worked so hard for.

A Quick Guide to Home Insurance

Contrary to common misconceptions, home insurance is not just another expense to budget for on top of your monthly bills. It’s an investment in your property and financial security in case of emergency. 

It doesn’t matter if your home is new and well-built—the weather alone in Alberta means disasters can occur anytime. In fact, 1 in 20 homes in Canada file a home insurance claim every year. This shows just how often these common disasters occur; the last thing you want is to get caught unprepared in case of:

  • Windstorms
  • Hailstorms
  • Fires
  • Lightning damage
  • Water and freezing damage
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Third-party liability for injuries suffered by guests in your home

What does home insurance cover?

Next to safety at home, having the right home insurance coverage is your best line of defence against the worst-case scenarios. This abundance of caution offers the financial protection you and your loved ones need to rebuild your home and your lives. You will even be surprised to learn how comprehensive this protection is, as it can include the following:

1. Structural damage

If your home is damaged in a fire, lightning storm, or other events, you can count on your home insurance coverage to protect your savings and help you get back on your feet as quickly as possible. Home insurance pays for repairs to both internal and external structural damage. With the right coverage amount, you won’t even have to worry about additional costs.

2. Your belongings

It’s not much of a home without the lifestyle essentials and little things that make it up. Your furniture, electronics, and personal effects like clothing, jewelry, and other items all help you live comfortably, so losing them would be inconvenient.

The good news is that your home insurance covers your belongings, even when they’re lost while you’re temporarily away from home, such as when you’re on vacation. This coverage may also apply to dependents who live away from home, such as your kids in university. 

Talk to your insurance broker to make sure you have enough coverage. If you have high-value assets like jewelry and paintings whose value exceed the base policy limits, you can also purchase additional coverage to ensure total protection.

3. Landscaping

Home insurance covers your entire property, including the outdoor landscaping that creates a refreshing vibe amidst the hustle and bustle in Alberta. Shrubs, trees, plants, and other outdoor improvements you’ve made are all covered due to an insured peril, within policy limits.

4. Temporary living expenses

Need to vacate your home while it’s under repair due to an insured loss? No problem! Home insurance covers hotel bills or short-term rentals, food, and other expenses that you would typically have to pay for on your own without enough coverage. Focus on rebuilding your home and easing back to normal without worrying about out-of-pocket expenses.

5. Liability coverage

As a homeowner, you are responsible for everything that happens in your home. This includes the safety of your guests and their property. If they suffer an injury—such as slipping on the deck—or damage to their belongings, home insurance provides liability coverage. This covers legal fees, settlements, and other necessary payments if you are found negligent for failing to maintain a safe environment, or causing damage to their property.

How much home insurance do I need?

Every property is unique, and each homeowner has different needs. Your home insurance coverage should reflect these to provide complete financial protection and peace of mind. There are many factors to consider when choosing and customizing your home insurance policy. 

Keep in mind that your home insurance coverage is always subject to the wording, terms, conditions, and deductibles, as well as the perils, exclusions, and limits on your policy.

To learn more about home insurance and what it covers, contact Bow Valley Insurance in Alberta for a free, no-obligation quote.