You bought home insurance and paid your premiums so it’s easy to expect your claims to be paid in full when your time of need arrives. There can be several reasons claims get denied, but luckily, many of them are easily avoidable. Here are common reasons why home insurance claims get denied and how you can try to steer clear of them.
What are some reasons homeowners insurance claims get denied?
Not Enough Information
As the homeowner, it’s your responsibility to file and prove your claim. Not only should you try and supply detailed documentation of the damage to your property, but you should also do your best to do a complete inventory of valuables on or in your property prior to the loss.
Taking Too Long to File
If you take too long to file a claim, there’s a greater chance it will be denied. Policies typically contain time-sensitive requirements for filing the claim and documenting damage, so it’s important to take note of your policy’s time limit for filing claims as soon as you get coverage.
If your premium payments are late, it could result in lapses in coverage. When this happens, you’re running the risk of property damage occurring at a time that your home is technically not covered . Whether it’s having a calendar reminder or automatic payments, it’s important to try and make sure your policy stays in force.
Threat of Fraud
Unfortunately, insurance fraud is a predictable reality. Therefore, insurance companies will often send their own claims adjuster to investigate claims. Anything that raises questions—whether in the claim or in your initial application—can be a cause of denial. This is just one reason why it’s important to be as detailed and accurate as possible when filing your claim.
Claim Type Not Included in Coverage
There’s a chance your basic homeowners policy doesn’t cover the entire house and everything in it. Common policy “exclusions” include earthquakes, floods and water/sewage backup, or other regional risks. You’ll want to have a complete understanding of what your policy includes and excludes at time of purchase, as there are many additional coverages, including umbrella insurance, that can be added to your policy to help fill gaps in your coverage.
Damage Doesn’t Exceed the Deductible
Your home insurance deductible is what you pay before your insurance coverage kicks in. If the estimated loss is below your deductible level, then your insurance company likely won’t pay anything on the claim.
Somebody (or Something Else’s) Fault
If it was your contractor’s negligence that collapsed the foundation or your neighbor’s tree that totaled your SUV, your insurance company isn’t necessarily responsible for the damage from such an incident.
Damage from Wear and Tear
You have homeowner’s insurance to protect your assets from damages that are out of your control, but what you can control is how you maintain your home. If a claims adjuster finds evidence of poor maintenance or damage that’s a result of normal wear-and-tear, there is a chance the claim will be denied.
Home insurance is one of the best ways to protect one of your most expensive assets. Taking the time to understand your home insurance policy is key to making sure you have coverage when you need it most.
At SelectQuote, we’re here to make shopping for home insurance easy. We can help you sort through the complexities of buying home insurance by comparing coverage and rates from some of the most trusted carriers in just minutes. We can answer your questions, explain the details of your policy, help you find opportunities for discounts and more.