It’s nearly spring. Here in Wisconsin, we know that we could see a few more snow showers and we may have to deal with 30 and 40-degree weather. But, we’re ready for spring and to get outdoors. You may be like many homeowners who find the first few weeks of spring mean cleaning up and refreshing your home’s landscaping. Many times, our insurance agents at Ellis Insurance also learn about changes homeowners are making to their property. That’s a good thing! Before you make those changes, though, we have a few warnings for you.
Before You Count on Coverage
Let’s be clear. Home insurance in WI is specifically meant to protect your home’s structure and other structures on your property. You do not have coverage for the land itself. That means that the additions to your home you make to the land may not directly mean coverage for an accident.
- If you have a retaining wall installed and it falls over, your home insurance does not provide coverage for the repairs.
- If you install new plants and flowers, no matter how much they add beauty to the home, they are not covered for replacements if a storm wipes them out.
- For those that are considering a fire pit, remember that these structures can add risk, without any coverage on your plan.
Before you make changes to your property, be sure you know what coverages you have.
Be Careful: These Projects Add Risk
It’s always a good idea to hire a professional to install your home’s new structures. Even when they do, some projects add risk to your home. Any type of situation where your home poses a higher likelihood of leading to a home insurance claim is a risk. Your home insurance policy needs to account for this. Here are some examples.
You’re Adding a Pool
Pools are great for the kids all summer. However, you do need to let your home insurance agent know that they are present. They do add risk. Those you invite into your pool can slip and fall, causing medical bills. Someone can fall into the pool who is just walking in the yard. This is a liability risk to you.
You’re Adding an Outdoor Kitchen
Everyone loves the thought of an outdoor kitchen. Perhaps you hope to have a pizza oven or an open grilling pit. Some people love grilling so much they have several grills in place. Each of these poses a fire hazard. It is important that your home insurance agent know about them. You’ll want to be sure you have ample coverage in place.
Some Projects Increase Your Coverage Needs
Some types of home projects can require you to add more coverage. Here’s why. Your home insurance policy covers your home through its Coverage A – Dwelling plan. Your Coverage B – Other Structures coverage is usually valued at 10 percent of Coverage A. The additions of structures to your property can push these structures above that 10 percent threshold. This may mean you need a bit more coverage.
The good news is, it isn’t hard to protect your home. If you are adding a garage, a new shed, or even a big treehouse, let your agents at Ellis Insurance know. Our agents are happy to answer questions and give you guidance on protecting your home.