Fire, Storms, and Floods are not the only perils that can damage your home. Earthquakes can cause horrible damages too and it isn’t a peril we often think about here in the heartland.
Does a standard homeowners policy cover earthquake damage? No. Earthquake coverage is available as a separate coverage. In earthquake prone areas, the cost of insurance is relatively high but in other areas, it can be relatively inexpensive.
Living in Ohio we don’t tend to think about earthquakes often but in the past year there have been 13 earthquakes that measured 1.5 or greater.
Did you know that Brick homes, wood frame homes with crawl spaces, and multi-story homes are more likely to be damaged in an earthquake? A qualified contractor or engineer can help you assess your home’s risk for earthquake damage.
So how does Earthquake Insurance work anyway?
Earthquake Coverage will help cover repairs needed because of earthquake damage to your dwelling and may cover damage other structures such as a garage that is not attached to your home. It insures your personal property against damage from an earthquake as well. It may cover increased costs to meet current building codes and costs to stabilize the land under your home. Earthquake insurance covers the cost to remove debris. It also pays for extra living expenses you may have while your home is being rebuilt or repaired.
How much coverage do you need?
How much would it cost to repair or rebuild your home? Your insurance agent should be able to help you decide how much coverage you need based on your home owners replacement cost policy.
The Earthquake Deductible is different from your regular Home owners deductible!
Most of you know what a deductible is. The deductible is the amount you (the homeowner) are responsible for on each claim. The insurer is responsible for the amount greater than the deductible, up to the coverage limit.
A regular home owners deductible in today’s market starts at $1,000 while the standard Earthquake deductible starts at 10% of the coverage limit. For example if you have a coverage amount of $250,000 your deductible would be $25,000!
Take the time to do a review with your agent! Even if you don’t live in an area where Earthquakes are prevalent it’s better to have spoken to your agent about it and decided not to have the coverage then never thought about it at all and suddenly realize you might have needed it when your awoken at 3 am to the rolling and shaking of a earthquake.