You aren’t required to take out homeowners insurance by law, but if you have a mortgage, your lender will absolutely mandate that you take out a policy because while you make payments that investment is actually owned by the bank. Even if you buy your home with cash or have your house paid off, you still need homeowners insurance to protect yourself and your property. In fact, you might be surprised by all the difference scenarios your homeowners policy will cover.
In general, most homeowners insurance will cover damage to your home caused by fire, smoke, lightening, freezing, vandalism and theft. It may also cover bodily injury and medical costs for people hurt on your property like slips, falls and dog bites. The most common things that are not covered by any homeowners policies are flooding, government action and normal wear and tear.
Here are the three main functions covered by home insurance:
- Repairing your house, yard and other structures: If a fire or severe storm damaged or even leveled your home, could you afford to cost to rebuild out of pocket? Homeowners insurance helps cover reconstruction to restore your property in the event of a catastrophic fire or storm. Homeowners insurance also covers additional structures on your property like your garage or shed.
- Repair or replace damaged or stolen personal belongings: Many policies cover your belongings as well so that they can be replaced after a fire or storm destroys your home or yard. You may have to keep a list and photos documenting the property you wish to cover such as electronics, furniture or other expensive items. Vehicles and jewelry are usually covered under additional policies.
- Coverage of some personal (bodily harm) liability issues: If a neighbor trips and falls on your driveway and sues you or your dog bites a visitor, your homeowners policy can help cover the medical damages. Some restrictions may apply.
To make sure you get the right type of coverage that suits your specific property, consult with an Oklahoma home insurance agent who can help you choose the right policy and get you the best rates.