Florida is a beautiful, sunny coastal state, but its world-renowned beaches come with a host of problems, from flooding to hurricanes to severe storms. Unfortunately, Florida is equally as known for the common occurrence of natural disasters as it is for its beaches and people. However, there are still many people who live in Florida and plan to stay, even though they know that their lives (and their houses) could be turned upside-down at a moment’s notice. The common occurrence of natural disasters that devastates properties keeps Florida home insurance companies raking in the business and very busy. Unfortunately, many Florida residents who call this state home may not appreciate the value of their homeowner’s insurance until disaster strikes. Read on to learn more about Florida’s HO3 Homeowners policy and what it covers.
What The HO3 Home Insurance Policy Is
The HO3 Home Insurance Policy is America’s most widely used homeowner’s insurance policy because it offer great coverage for your home along with decent coverage for your personal property. The HO3 policy integrates two major policy types. The first is an “open perils” policy on your home where “perils” are listed that are not covered. Basically, if something occurs that is not specifically on the list of exclusions, it is covered by the policy. The second type of policy it includes is the “named perils” policy that deals with personal property. A “named perils” policy specifically lists the perils that are covered, meaning that if the disaster isn’t listed, the damages caused by the disaster will not be covered. Homeowners throughout the state of Florida are at high risk of hurricanes and tropical storms, so as a result most homeowner’s policies here cover structural damage and theft loss due to leaks, fire, water discharge, storm damage, and fallen trees. Luckily, the majority of windstorm damage is typically covered and wind damage is generally included as part of any homeowner’s insurance policy, although many types of water damage such as flooding are not.
What Many HO3 Insurance Policies Don’t Cover
While HO3 is the most common homeowner’s policy available, homeowners should be aware of its limitations:
- These policies typically only offer limited water damage coverage
- Open Perils coverage generally only covers 16 very specific perils, and additional perils added will mean additional premiums.
Experts say that claims in Florida are mostly for air conditioning systems, water leaks, water heaters, roofs, and plumbing, and not from the dramatic natural disasters the news highlights. Homeowners should be clear about flood damage since wind damage is typically covered but flood damage (especially in Florida) is usually a separate policy. The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) offers homeowners flood policies, and their rates are standardized by the federal government.
Contact Us Today
In a state so prone to natural disasters and flooding like Florida, it is essential for homeowners to understand what their homeowner’s insurance policy covers (and doesn’t cover) so that they won’t be left in arrears when disaster does strike. Craig D. Rolle, Esq. is a top Florida property damage attorney based in Orlando. Call Craig D. Rolle, Esq. for a consultation today.