Is hidden structural chimney damage something that my home insurance policy covers?

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Asked September 23, 2013

1 Answer


Homeowners insurance only covers specific perils named in the policy, such as fire, wind damage, or theft and vandalism. For other types of coverage, you will need to pick up secondary insurance plans or riders that can be attached to your existing homeowner's policy. Where the structure of the home is concerned, even the chimney, you need to have a home warranty in addition to your home insurance policy.

Homeowners insurance is not designed to guarantee the structure of the home and other dwellings. For protection of this type, you need to have a home warranty. Home warranties are purchased along with the closing on the home, and cover failures or damages that are related to the home's electronics, plumbing, mechanical systems, and the integrity of the home structure itself.

A home warranty would be useful if you discover structural chimney damage after moving into the home, because you purchased the home with the understanding that everything, including the structural integrity, were in acceptable condition. Since you have discovered that the home you bought does not meet the construction standards you had expected to buy, your home warranty would pay for the repairs to the chimney.

Homeowners insurance, on the other hand, is not designed for claims against the structural integrity of the home. It is designed more to protect the homeowners and existing building, and make any necessary repairs. Since structural integrity was presumed to be in good condition when the home was purchased, the best you can expect from your home insurance is to repair any future damages back to the state the chimney is in now, and that will not solve your problem.

Answered September 23, 2013 by Anonymous

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