Skip the Stress: Check Your Insurance Coverage Before Your Renovation

Skip the Stress: Check Your Insurance Coverage Before Your Renovation

You’ve already been through the hullaballoo that comes with buying homeowners insurance when you were first handed the keys to your new home. But now that the new home sheen has worn off, it’s time to dive into some home improvements.

The downside is that your insurance package might not cover your new needs. To keep yourself and your home protected, it’s worth a look into the fine print. Here’s what you need to know about your insurance – and your contractor’s – to ensure your remodel goes smoothly.

Giving Your Policy Another Look

The first place to start is taking 10 minutes to call your insurance agent. Describe your project and the changes it will make in your home. Your agent will give you the low-down on whether your policy covers rebuilding costs and, if not, determine how much additional coverage you will need. Increasing your insurance will save the day in case any damage occurs during your remodel, sparing you repair costs.

You’ll also need to consider extending your liability coverage. Most policies provide a basic $100,000 in liability and $25,000 in property damage. If this isn’t enough, you can purchase an umbrella policy to offset the difference.

Your remodel is also a great time to reevaluate. Your project will increase your home’s value, so remember to up your coverage amount. Depending on your homeowners policy, this may not be necessary. If it is, be warned it could increase your premium – but your house is your haven, so it’s worth the small payment increase to protect.

Check Your Contractor’s Coverage

You have a lot of questions for your contractor. That’s natural, especially since they’ll be in your home bringing your vision to life. But before you bring them onto your team, ask for written proof of their workers’ compensation policy. You don’t want to open yourself up to litigation if they or a subcontractor is injured on your project.

Your contractor should also have liability insurance of their own. This keeps you protected in case any damage unrelated to your remodel occurs in your home. If your contractor is missing either of these two key pieces of coverage, you can add them to your homeowners insurance.

Doing a double-check on your and your contractor’s insurance is simple enough, and it’ll give you confidence to launch your remodel. You won’t stay up late worrying about whether you’re protected. Instead, you can spend that time making the decisions you care about the most – like which flooring will see your kids off to college or the color of that statement wall which will be the background to every family photo.