This is a re-post from a 2019, but with 2020 becoming the “Summer of the Stay-cation” and many people using planned vacation funds for home renovations, updates and outdoor amenities, we thought this would be a timely reminder about Renovations and Insurance.
If you are planning to renovate, please check with your Insurance Partner to confirm they will provide coverage for your renovation, or extend coverage to your temporary home and storage unit, if you will be moving out during the reno. If you will be hiring a Contractor, contact Case Insurance Brokers for a complimentary “Hiring A Contractor” information sheet.
Do not be surprised if your Insurer WILL NOT extend coverage to your Home during your renovation! In this case, contact your Broker, or better yet speak with Case Insurance Brokers, to review and understand your insurance options. You may need a “Builders Risk” Insurance Policy which would replace your Homeowner Insurance during your Renovation period. You can keep your Homeowner Policy in force and use it to provide coverage for the Liability and Contents in a rental unit if you will be living elsewhere during the Renovation.
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Let’s face it, renovations are exciting! With all the time and energy invested in deciding on the perfect paints, stains, room sizes and floor materials, it is not surprising that “call my Insurance Broker/Insurance Company” might be left off your to-do list. However, it is very important to call your Broker or Insurance Company before beginning any major renovations in order to make sure you are covered during the renovation. What qualifies as “major” could depend on insurance company.
Why should you call before starting? There are two major reasons:
- Your renovation may require you to get a different type of insurance coverage during the construction period. Your Home Policy may not extend to renovations, especially if you have to move out, or there are structural changes being made.
- Home Insurance is based on the Replacement Cost Value of your house. So, if you are updating, renovating or adding to your home, it makes sense that the replacement value of the house should increase by the value of the renovation.
Contacting your Broker to give them the “heads up” when you are thinking of starting a renovation project will, more often than not, benefit you. You will get expert advice on what kinds of changes would make a good addition to your home, and making sure that you are covered on all sides in case the unexpected occurs during the renovation process.
Great coverage, without breaking the bank is important to most homeowners. Updates to your home could cause your insurance rates to go up, or down. Let’s take a look at some of the home renovations that could increase and decrease your home insurance rates.
Renovations and changes that could increase your overall home insurance costs include:
- Adding a Pool, Spa or Deck space
- Launching a Home-based business
- Increasing the house footprint or adding a floor.
- Upgrading the material quality, adding custom designs or features – especially for basements, kitchens or bathrooms
On the other hand, here are some renovations that could reduce your home insurance costs:
- Getting a New roof
- Updating your plumbing and wiring
- Upgrading your Furnace or Air Conditioning
- Adding a Tankless Water Heater
- Adding a Sump Pump or Back-up Valve
- Adding a centrally monitored Burglar and Fire Alarm
- Owning a dog
Does any of this surprise you? If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact Case Insurance Brokers to discuss.