It’s every homeowner’s nightmare to open the basement door and see their basement flooded with water. If you have a finished basement, it’s even more of a nightmare. After you get the standing water out, you’ll realize that everything you had on the floor is waterlogged and probably ruined. The sheetrock on the walls will soak up water and be ruined. Your carpeting might need to be replaced too. If you don’t have a finished basement, you’ll have less damage but there is still a lot of clean up.
Does my Homeowners Insurance cover basement flooding?
Well, it depends on where the water came from. If a pipe burst or if your water heater leaked, you’re probably covered without an issue. If there was a blockage in a pipe which caused an overflow in your basement, you’re probably covered for that too. If the water backed up through a drain or sewer, you’ll need an optional coverage to be covered. Different insurance companies use different names for this coverage but we’ll call it Water Backup Coverage for our purposes. If water flows in through a basement window, your Homeowners Insurance probably won’t provide any coverage unfortunately.
Water Backup Coverage
The optional Water Backup Coverage usually has a separate coverage limit and is typically $5,000, $10,000 or $25,000 depending on what the homeowner chooses. This coverage amount will help pay for professional cleanup and restoration as well as damage to personal property.
Many people tell me that they’re not concerned with adding the Water Backup Coverage because they have a sump pump which will pump water out. Although this may be true, I often see these types of claims occurring during storms when there is significant rainfall and the power goes out. Without power, your sump pump won’t work unless you have a battery backup or standby generator. Also, Water Backup Coverage also provides coverage for sewer backups. Your sump pump won’t help you if sewage is coming into your home from the main sewer line.
For more information about Water Backup Coverage, please visit our Contact Us page.
John Lofrumento, CFP®, FSCP®, RICP®
President, The Lofrumento Agency
Clifton Park, NY / Ballston Lake, NY