Storms can do quite a bit of damage to homes, especially those surrounded by tall trees. Does standard home insurance coverage pay for fallen trees that damage property? It’s complex because your policy will likely only pay for specific damage. Here’s what you should know about homeowners’ insurance regarding fallen trees.
When Homeowners’ Insurance Covers Tree Removal?
The standard home insurance coverage covers certain natural disasters, such as severe storms. It depends on the writing style of the policy, but usually, homeowners get protection from damage to their homes and fences caused by wind, hail, snow, or ice. You can still get reimbursed if the reason why the tree fell was due to other perils, such as fire and lightning.
This coverage usually includes tree removal. Your insurer will more likely cover the damage if a tree falls on your roof or a fence but is unlikely to provide reimbursement if the tree falls on the lawn.
What If a Neighbor’s Fallen Tree Damages Your Home?
Your homeowners’ insurance may cover an incident where your neighbor’s tree falls on your home due to a covered peril. There are cases, however, when your policy might not cover a neighbor’s tree falling on your property.
If your insurer discovered the tree was old and rotting, for example, you will probably not be reimbursed by your policy. But you can still file a liability claim with your neighbor’s insurance provider. If the claim is denied, you should try to work out a deal with your neighbor to pay for tree removal.
What are the Coverage Limits for Tree Removal?
Each insurance company sets its own policies and payouts for tree removal. A standard plan typically pays $500 per tree removed and up to $1,000 for total tree removal coverage. Debris removal coverage may require signing up for separate coverage.
When Doesn’t Homeowners’ Insurance Cover Tree Removal?
Your policy may list exclusions in which certain reasons for a fallen tree are not covered. Earthquakes or flooding, for example, typically require separate special coverage to pay for property damage or debris removal. Furthermore, a claim will not apply if the insurer learns the tree fell due to preventable scenarios, such as rot, old age, or pest infestation.
What If a Tree Falls on My Car While Driving?
No homeowners insurance policy will pay for car repairs, which auto insurance does not cover. But your standard policy may still pay for tree removal in your driveway if the tree fell due to a covered peril. The best coverage to have in place to pay for vehicle damage is comprehensive auto insurance.
How to Prevent Fallen Tree Damage?
You can prevent trees from damaging your property by periodically pruning dead branches. You can also have your trees inspected by an arborist to check for termite problems.
Prepare for Disaster with the Right Insurance
The best way to prepare for a disaster threatening your home is to learn the risks involved and take preventive steps. If you want to learn more about home insurance coverage, contact us today at Locke Insurance Group. We are happy to assist you.