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December 06, 2022

6 things that can void your home insurance

Avoid these six things to ensure your home insurance policy does not get cancelled or denied.

Your home insurance helps to protect you and your possessions, so watch out for these common mistakes.

1. Leaving your house empty for extended periods

If you plan on being away from home for an extended period, you will need to have a trustworthy adult occasionally check the condition of your home. If you’re away for too long, you may not be covered in the event of damage or theft. Contact your insurer before leaving your house for an extended period to confirm your policy details.

If you’re away during the winter months, you may want to turn off your water and leave the lowest tap in the house open to drain your pipes. This will help to prevent broken pipes and water damage if the power goes out or your furnace breaks down.

Avoid announcing publicly on social media that you’re on vacation since this advertises that your house is sitting empty. Also, keep in mind that posting photos of your trip can alert criminals that your home may be an easy target.

2. Neglecting home maintenance

If you don’t carry out essential repairs and maintenance on your home, you may lose coverage on your insurance policy. For example: if you don’t replace missing roof shingles and get water damage on your ceilings, it may not be covered. Check with your insurer to see what’s expected of you.

3. Hosting guests within your home

Your policy may have restrictions relating to home-sharing services, so before inviting temporary guests, check with your insurer to confirm your coverage if something happens to your home while it’s being rented.

4. Filing a fraudulent claim

Exaggerating the value of items in your home or filing a fraudulent claim could invalidate your coverage. An insurance claim requires proof of ownership, which may include receipts, photos and/or other evidence showing the value of an item and that they are yours.

Your home insurance policy may also have a payout limit on valuables such as jewelry, artwork and other items. So, if you acquire any high-value possessions, speak with your insurer to ensure your coverage reflects their worth.

5. Running a home-based business

Your home-based business may require a specific type of coverage not included in your insurance policy and the space or equipment you use to conduct your work may not be covered. Be sure to speak with your insurer to ensure you’re properly protected.

6. Not informing your insurer of upgrades

Are you planning a major home improvement project? Contact your insurance company in advance to inform them. Home renovations could increase the risk to your insurance company and may not be covered by your policy.
Your home insurance policy is there to protect you and provide peace of mind. If you’re in doubt about your coverage, review your policy and speak with your insurer.

Need to update your home insurance policy? Now is the perfect time with OMA Insurance.