Will My Homeowners Insurance Policy Cover Debris Removal?

Your homeowners’ insurance should pay for fire damage, but you may wonder if this basic coverage includes cleaning up debris from the fire before rebuilding. The answer is complex because depending on the policy, it might cover a certain amount of debris removal, but probably not all.

Here’s a deeper look at how insurers view fire debris removal claims.

Debris from a Fire

A standard homeowners insurance plan typically includes a section called “additional coverage,” which includes fire debris removal. The damage must be due to a covered peril stated in the policy. That means the fire must be caused by a natural disaster and not negligence from forgetting about a burning candle that starts a fire.

The coverage usually pays for up to 25 percent of the amount it costs to repair the damage and 25 percent of the policyholder’s deductible. You will have to cover the remaining balance, which may still be substantial since debris removal isn’t cheap. Nonetheless, your policy may allow you to increase your coverage amount. If you live on a large property, you may need large dumpsters for the job.

Fire debris must be inspected and removed quickly to ensure your home is safe from hazardous contaminants. Luckily there are junk removal services that provide timely and comprehensive cleanup. Look for a debris removal service in your area that focuses on sustainable solutions such as recycling sustainable materials. A reputable debris removal company will ensure your home is safe from environmental waste and prepare your home for the rebuilding process.

Storm Damage

Large properties can be expensive to clean up after a severe storm. Unfortunately, if a tree falls on your home without causing damage to the roof, you will likely not be able to file a successful claim. Again, it depends on the policy wording, but typically debris removal from a storm is only covered by your homeowners plan if it’s associated with actual property damage. Otherwise, you will need to pay for the debris removal yourself.

Additional Coverage

You can get additional coverage up to $10,000 for debris removal but you’ll probably need to pay a higher premium. This coverage is often necessary if you live in an area that routinely faces heavy storms. Be aware that different insurance companies have different views on debris removal, so there might be a plan more suited to your needs, provided you do enough research.

Check Your Policy

A simple way to find homeowners insurance is to just Google “homeowners insurance near me.” The only problem is each homeowner needs their own customized plan, even though some insurers only offer one-size-fits-all type plans. You need an insurer who cares about your personal needs rather than one who just treats customers like statistics.

That’s why you need to review a homeowners policy thoroughly before diving into a decision about coverage that specifically fits your situation. Be prepared with questions that affect you personally so that you end up with coverage that works. Contact us at J. Archer Insurance Group for more information on finding the right homeowners’ insurance plan for your unique coverage needs.

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