Are there any items outside of my actual home but on my property that are covered by my homeowners insurance?
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Asked July 17, 2013
In addition to the dwelling, personal property, liability and loss of use coverage offered in a standard home insurance policy, there is also coverage for other structures. This is part of a standard homeowner's policy, and includes protection for all of the perils named in the policy, including fire, wind, and some types of water damage among other things. It used to cover any non-attached building on the property, such as a guest cottage, boathouse, or even a pump house. The other structures portion of your home policy goes even further, insuring all fixed constructions as well.
Fences, driveways, and decorative gates are all covered by the other structures portion of your home insurance policy. A brick mailbox would be covered too, and so would a professionally built playhouse for the kids or a kennel where you enjoy your hobby of raising show dogs. If it is built or permanently attached to the real estate, but is not permanently attached to the home itself, it is covered as an "other" structure.
One thing that should be considered, though, is that the other structures portion of your policy is going to have limits on the value of property covered, and may have a separate deductible as well. Typically, the other structures will be covered up to a percentage of the home value, and you can extend that coverage by purchasing a rider. You can also purchase separate insurance policies for non-attached buildings, such as buying a policy to protect the garage where you tinker at amateur science experiments. If the value of a structure is high, insure it separately.
Read your policy carefully, and you will see any exclusions to coverage listed. This might include spas or pools, as well as any damage caused by those items. Some breeds of dogs are also excluded from home insurance, so be sure to check the dangerous breed list of your preferred insurer.
Answered July 17, 2013 by Anonymous