Tree damage can cause serious damage to your house. This is one of the many responsibilities that come with owning a home. If a tree falls on your house, it can cause damage to the structure and your belongings. Fallen trees can cause financial damage that can be devastating and frustrating, as well as heartbreaking.
Sometimes, you might not be able to stop a tree from falling on your home. You can prevent tree damage by taking steps to ensure that your trees are healthy. It is important to understand the details of standard homeowners insurance policies so you can be sure you know exactly what you are covered for and what you will have to pay out of pocket.
Is homeowner insurance available to cover tree damage?
The situation will determine whether or not homeowners insurance covers tree damage. To be covered for tree damage, the tree must have fallen because of a covered peril. Also, the structure must be damaged.
These scenarios are usually covered by homeowners insurance
- Lightning can cause a fire
Tree damage may not be covered if it’s caused by any of these:
Insurance may not cover a tree that falls on your property but does not cause damage to the home or other structures.
Is homeowner insurance available to cover tree removal?
Sometimes falling trees don’t always strike your home. They may even fall in your yard without causing any damage. If a tree falls on your home or blocks an access point, homeowner’s insurance usually covers it. Tree removal might be covered in certain situations:
- If a tree is struck by an insured structure.
- If a fallen tree blocks a driveway.
- A fallen tree may block a wheelchair-accessible ramp.
If an insured structure is not damaged, reimbursement for removal is unlikely (unless it is preventing access points such as the ones listed above). Tree removal may have a limit on the amount that can be paid, such as $500. It is important to review your policy and speak with your agent about your coverage.
How to respond if someone else’s tree causes damage to your property
No matter who the tree belongs to, a standard homeowners policy will cover it.
Sometimes, an insurance company might try to get the money from the neighbor’s company to cover the damage. This is called subrogation. It may also cover homeowner’s deductible.
What to Expect from an Insurance Company
Your insurance company will pay you a payout depending on the type of property that was damaged. You may be eligible for up to the maximum amount of your policy’s residence coverage if a covered peril causes property damage. If your personal items were damaged, you can file a claim. You may not be covered for high-value possessions if you do not add them to your policy with a rider or endorsement. These limits can be increased, but this will likely cause homeowners insurance premium increase.
After a claims adjuster has created an estimate for each claim type, the insurance company subtracts the policy deductible from any amount you receive. Most homeowners insurance policies cover living expenses, such as hotel stays, if your home becomes uninhabitable during repairs.
How to prevent tree destruction
As a homeowner, it is your responsibility to ensure that your trees are maintained properly. Homeowners insurance may not cover damage caused by dead or decaying trees. These are some things you can do in order to stop trees causing property and structure damage.
- Trim any trees that are on your property regularly, especially those that have long branches that could fall or cause damage from wind, snow, or ice.
- Dead trees can be easily identified by year-round lacks of leaves and hollow trunks.
- You should look out for rot at tree trunks’ bases. You should look out for mushrooms and cracks or holes in the bottom.
- Trees that lean off-center should be removed as they could fall.
- Trees that hang over your roof, driveway, or power lines should be taken extra care.
Questions frequently asked
Which is the best company for home insurance?
There are many factors that go into choosing the best home insurance company. It’s a smart idea to compare quotes from the top home insurance companies by using criteria such as customer service scores, financial strength ratings, and average premiums. It is important to compare the needs of different homeowners. Therefore, it is wise to consider all options and talk with an insurance professional licensed in your area.
Is homeowners insurance able to cover tree removals that are diseased?
Tree removal that is infected is usually considered routine maintenance. It is not normally covered by standard homeowners insurance policies. It is up to you to monitor the health of your trees, and to treat them as necessary.
Will homeowners insurance cover me if a tree falls on my roof?
Although roof replacement can be costly, most policies will cover tree damage to a roof in the event of one of these perils:
- Lightning or fire
- Hailstorms and windstorms
- Riots and vandalism, or theft
- Accidents or injuries caused by aircrafts or vehicles
- Volcanic eruptions
- Falling objects
- The amount of snow, ice, or sleet.
Most roof damage caused by a tree that was felled by flooding or earthquakes will not be covered. If you live in an area that is susceptible to these perils, it is a good idea for you to buy a separate policy. For clarification on the coverages in your policy, ask your agent.