Your house is probably your most valuable asset and to protect it along with your personal belongings in it, you need a homeowner’s policy. However, do you really know what is included in your policy? What happens if there is an emergency? Do you know your coverage? Most people don’t really take the time to go through their homeowner’s policy thoroughly.
When you either purchase or renew a homeowner’s policy or if you’re looking to make changes to an existing policy, you will be given a ‘Declaration Page’ by your insurance company.
You should review this page carefully. It should include your home and personal information as well as summarize all your different types of coverage. Information that your homeowners insurance policy declaration page should have on it includes:
- Policy number
- Time period your policy covers
- Your name and address
- Your insured home’s address
- Mortgagee name
- Policy limits and coverage types on your policy
- Policy deductible amount
- Discounts you received
- Home-rating information
- Your premium amount
When you receive your declaration page, make sure you go through it thoroughly. Check it over to ensure there are no errors on it and that it properly reflects all your coverage and any extra riders you might have included.
The mortgage company for your home will usually request proof of homeowner’s insurance yearly. You can provide them with a copy of your up-to-date declarations page. If you don’t provide your lender this proof of insurance, they can purchase insurance for your home in your name and tack the monthly payments on to your mortgage payments. This is known as a force-placed insurance policy and can be more costly than a standard homeowner’s policy.
Many homeowners have questions regarding the coverages their insurance policy offers and often don’t get answers until after they have home damage from a natural disaster or fire. Taking a quick peek at your declaration page of your homeowner’s policy will give you a quick look at what is and is not covered under your policy.
Remember, that the list of coverages you have on your declaration page might not be all-inclusive. If you have optional add-ons like personal day care insurance or identity theft coverage, these things might not be listed. Keep in mind that your homeowner’s insurance declaration page is meant to be a summary of your policy that you can easily read in a time pinch. You will need to refer to your homeowner’s policy itself for a detailed list and explanation of all your coverages.