Homeowners insurance coverage isn’t always clear and straightforward. Insurance companies have rules and guidelines, but they look at cases individually and consider specific factors. When it comes to rodent damage, repairs may or may not be covered, depending on the source of the problem and whether it could have been prevented.
Insurance Won’t Cover Rodent Damage Attributed to Neglect
Homeowners insurance typically covers damage that occurs accidentally or suddenly. Rodent damage generally occurs over a period of time and can usually be dealt with before it becomes serious.
As a homeowner, you have a responsibility to perform routine maintenance on your property or to hire others to do so. The way insurance companies look at it, if you take care of your house, either rodents won’t cause damage or an issue will be detected quickly and addressed before it becomes a major problem.
If you file an insurance claim for rodent damage and an adjuster determines that the problem occurred or got worse because you neglected regular maintenance or failed to make necessary repairs, the insurance company will most likely deny your claim. For instance, if your roof or siding is damaged, you don’t have it fixed and then mice or rats get into your house and cause more problems, your insurer will most likely refuse to pay to fix the damage the rodents caused.
Homeowners Insurance Will Cover Unforeseen and Unavoidable Rodent Damage
Sometimes rodents cause damage that a homeowner could not have foreseen or prevented. For instance, you may be unaware that mice are living in your attic. If one of them chews through an electrical wire, resulting in a house fire, your insurance company will likely cover the resulting damage to your house and belongings.
Insurance Usually Doesn’t Cover Rodent Removal
Homeowners insurance generally doesn’t pay for extermination or rodent removal services because they fall under your responsibility to maintain your property. Those services may be covered, however, if rodents get into your house because of a covered peril. For example, if a storm damages your roof and leaves a hole that allows mice or rats to get in, your insurer may pay for rodent removal and repairs because the damage is ultimately attributable to the storm, which is a covered peril.
Take Care of Your Home
How you handle routine maintenance and repairs can have a direct impact on your homeowners insurance coverage. It’s your responsibility to maintain your house. Neglecting maintenance may save you time and money now, but it can cost you a lot more in the long run if you find yourself with expensive repair bills that your insurance company won’t pay. Have your house regularly checked for evidence of a rodent problem, as well as damage that can let rodents get in. If any issues are detected, address them as soon as possible.
The post When Homeowners Insurance Will and Won’t Cover Rodent Damage appeared first on RISMedia.
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