Building a new deck? You may be wondering if it’s covered under your homeowners insurance policy. The truth is, your deck is considered a part of the physical structure of your home if it’s attached to your home. Therefore, it would be covered through your ‘dwelling coverage’ of your homeowner’s policy.
Many people think that their dwelling is the space that they live in and that their dwelling insurance might not cover anything else but this space. However, as long as the structure whether it be a garage or a new deck, is attached to your home, it falls under your dwelling coverage.
If any damage should happen to your attached deck due to a covered hazard, the costs of repairing it or rebuilding it would likely be covered through the dwelling portion of your homeowners policy and therefore your insurance provider will step in to help cover the repair or replacement even though you don’t typically dwell out on your deck on a regular basis.
There are certain hazards that most homeowner’s insurance policies cover, according to the Insurance Information Institute. It may vary from each state what that coverage is, but in most cases the following are covered:
- Smoke or fire
- Lightning strikes
- Falling objects
- Damage by a motor vehicle
- Damage by an aircraft
- Snow, ice or sleet accumulation causing damage
Although these hazards are usually covered, it’s always a good idea to check your own policy to see exactly what it covers. For instance, maintenance damage to your deck wouldn’t be covered. You are responsible for taking the necessary precautions to keep your home (and deck) protected from damage resulting from lack of maintenance, termite or other pest infestation, mold and more. Have your insurance agent go over what’s considered maintenance damage with you to be sure.
Damage from ground movement (such as sinkholes and earthquakes), floods and water backups are not covered either unless you add on this additional coverage.
Your homeowners insurance policy outlines how much coverage you have for covered losses and you are only covered for the specified amount that is listed on your policy. You can, however, change your limits on your policy at any time or add on more coverage for new additions (like your new deck). But, it’s important that you let your independent insurance agency provider know that you’re building that new deck or it may not be covered.