Do you have a basement? If so, you probably recognize that it is underground and faces damage risks in ways that differ from the rest of the home’s structure. Therefore, property insurance usually covers basements in different, often limited, fashions. The same goes for flood insurance. Water damage is a significant risk in and around basements. Therefore, some insurers won’t cover these incidents. Let’s take a closer look at why, and what you can do about it.
Water Damage in Basements
Basements are underground, and this is already a damp area to start, in most cases. Therefore, it is often easy for water to seep into basements. It might invade from groundwater sources, problems in your plumbing and even from water leaking in from rain. When the water gets in, it might cause:
- Structural damage
- Pest invasions
- Mold growth
- Damage to possessions
To safeguard against these risks, most homes will contain insulation and sealants around the basement area. However, in worst-case scenarios, water can still get in. You therefore want to do what you can to prevent it in your home.
Insurance Protection for Basement Water Damage
Only in limited cases will homeowners insurance cover water damage that occurs in your basement. For example, if a pipe bursts on your washing machine, flooding the basement, your home insurance might be able to pay for the damage. However, if a flood results from heavy rains and river swells, then your homeowners policy often won’t help you.
In these cases, you might have to turn to flood insurance. Flood insurance, in general, comes supported by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). In general, flood policies will cover the home’s structural damage, possessions losses and other expenses. Therefore, you’ll be able to better recover from flooding losses. However, if the flood only impacts your basement, then you might only find you have limited coverage available.
Basements are low, underground areas. They generally have some of the highest flooding risks, even in light precipitation. Flood insurers, therefore might find it too much of a cost risk to insure the basement at its full cost. Therefore, coverage might provide limited coverage, if any at all. For example, you might find that you have basement coverage for the structure and electrical wiring. However, possessions in the basement might have no coverage at all. Therefore, you should move everything out when flooding threatens.
Check your home insurance to see if it covers floods in the basement. If necessary, ask your agent at 817-563-5555 if you have options available to expand your basement protection.