The question of the day – Does homeowners insurance cover water damage?
At least once a week we are asked, Does homeowners insurance cover water damage?” One NC homeowner recently asked, “Does my home insurance cover a leak from an old water heater that ruptured? If so, am I able to file a claim even after I have made all repairs?”
The answer is, YES, absolutely, your homeowners insurance does cover water damage!
First, in most states you can file a homeowners property claim up to 3 years from the date of loss. However, you will get a lot of questions if you actually wait that long. Today, virtually all homeowners policies cover sudden and accidental leaks from a plumbing line or fixture. The words sudden and accidental are key. If you’ve had a water small leak for many months or years, your homeowners claim for water damage could be denied. However, never guess. Ask a Public Insurance adjuster to take a look before calling in your claim. you may guess wrong and believe you do not have coverage when you actually do. And, vise versa.
So, the answer for you is based on the conditions you have with your leak. There is no real conformity, as even a policy that covers a water leak in most instances, your homeowners policy for water damage will have a limit on mold related damages that were a result of the leak. Again, asking a Public Adjuster to inspect your damage can’t hurt. There is no cost for a water damage inspection.
Most Policies Will Fully Cover All Water Related Damages.
If you have an average NC homeowners policy, your water damage claim will be covered in full. This means the amount to have a Water Damage Restoration rip out all the wet drywall, insulation, floors, cabinets, etc. and to dry your home with special dehumidifiers and drying fans, will all be paid by the policy. If there is any related mold damage your policy will cover up to $5,000 for mold remediation. With that said, the plumbing repair itself to a busted pipe or the ruptured water heater, is not covered. Sounds odd, but your policy covers “water damage”, not the object that actually caused the water to release. That is considered a maintenance issue.
As for the second part of the question of whether you can still file a water damage claim after completing all repairs, that would really depends on the amount of time between the loss itself and when repairs where completed. See, you may have violated a condition under the policy that allows the insurance company the right to inspect any and all damages before any repairs are concluded. In a sense you have removed the evidence of the water damage. If you have pictures you should be okay. However, in good faith, which is what the policy is based on, most home insurance companies will not deny your claim based on late reporting. However, if your insurance company can’t inspect the water damage themselves, it can be tough for the policyholder to prove the amount of damage. Insurance companies do not want to overpay. So, they may not agree with all the items your replaced without having a chance to see why you replaced them.
Homeowners Who Have Water Damage Should Seek Help From A Public Adjuster
As stated, don’t risk submitting an improper claim that’s not covered – and don’t bypass a claim that should be covered. Contact a Public Adjuster for assistance so you can make an informed, educated decision on what you should do.