Your home insurance is there to offer you peace of mind. It’s designed to provide you and your family with a financial safety net in case disaster, or unfortunate events strike your home or puts you at a liability.
However, the sudden existence of a global health crisis is making homeowners around the country anxious about how this outbreak is going to affect their homeowners insurance policies – and you can’t blame them. Indeed, the COVID-19 pandemic shoved us into very uncertain times.
Read on to discover how the Coronavirus could possibly impact certain aspects of your homeowners policy.
Home Insurance Premiums
Based on the way things are progressing, it doesn’t seem like the COVID-19 pandemic will have a lasting and significant impact on homeowner policies and their premium rates.
If anything, people spending more time and working from home during the outbreak only reduces the risk of burglaries and losses that stem from neglect. There might be even extras in your policy that you won’t need right now and may consider letting go, like additional covers for when nobody’s at home.
You’d also be glad to know that the majority of insurance companies around the country are implementing temporary payment suspension or offering payment deferral options to their clients in light of the current situation.
Personal Liability Insurance
All in all, your existing insurance policy should have you sufficiently covered for the duration of this health crisis, especially if you’ve been diligently paying your premiums without fail. If there is one aspect of your homeowners insurance that you should endorse or upgrade, however, it would be your personal liability insurance coverage.
Online shopping and food/grocery deliveries, being the new normal, increases the risks of injuries on your property. If a delivery person slips on your doorstep and breaks a body part while sending your orders, they can sue you for damages. Moreover, if your children invite some of the neighborhood kids over and one of them gets hurt, it’s on you, too.
Ensuring that you have enough liability insurance to cover any possible future claims and lawsuits against you will give you peace of mind.
Work-from-home Set Up
Switching from an office-based job to a WFG set-up isn’t something you need to inform your insurer about unless you had to purchase home-office equipment.
If you’re only doing clerical or computer-based work using a laptop and other office equipment that belongs to your employer, you have nothing to worry about since these are probably under the company’s business insurance. However, if you’ve bought quite a lot of office equipment to work remotely, you might want to revisit your policy’s business equipment coverage, if there’s any.
Most homeowners insurance covers up to $2500 in home-office equipment. If you think you spent more than that, purchase a home business endorsement or a separate business equipment policy.
If you’re worried about not being able to make claims because of the outbreak, don’t be. Insurance companies will still be able to process insurance claims during the pandemic, albeit differently.
With all the new health and safety regulations in place, insurance companies are processing claims virtually instead of sending assessors to personally inspect the damage and settle claims. This new process is actually more convenient because you will only have to document the loss/ damage yourself through photos and videos, send them to your insurer, and await reimbursement.
Many homes are unoccupied during the pandemic, mainly due to mobility and transportation reasons. As such, those who are stuck abroad, unable to travel, or self-isolating in a different address are concerned about how leaving their property unoccupied affects their coverage.
The good news is that most home insurance providers commit to maintaining both home and belongings coverage during the quarantine/lock-down, even if the property has remained unoccupied for longer than the standard unoccupancy period.
Still, it would be best to contact your insurance company and raise the concern to be sure.
About the Author
Rachael Harper is the Content Marketing Strategist of Bennett & Porter, a wealth management and insurance firm based in Scottsdale, Arizona. When not writing, she makes use of her time reading books and playing bowling with her family and friends.