Protecting Your Home from Leaks: Will Home Insurance Help?

wet basement and insurance claims

When you invest in homeowner’s insurance, you want to know that you’re protected from even the strangest of problems around the house. Most of the time, you will be, especially if you invest carefully. However, it’s easy to get lost in the legalese of insurance. Sometimes, you may think you’re committing to comprehensive coverage when your provider has stated otherwise.

Take basement leaks, for example. Homeowner’s insurance policies will vary by provider, but many only cover a specific type of leak inside your home. You may not realize this until you go to file a claim and find yours denied.

What kind of leaks will you be able to cite in insurance claims, and will you receive the compensation you deserve?

Why Is Your Basement Leaking?

Before you file a claim with your insurance company, you’ll want to try and determine what may have caused your basement to start leaking. Insurance providers often determine whether or not they’ll honor a claim based on its location and cause.

With that in mind, what are the most common causes of basement leaks?

More often than not, you can blame a leak on hydrostatic pressure. This pressure builds up outside of your home when it rains or when you live in an area with a significant amount of groundwater. As this water interacts with the structural supports beneath your home, it’ll force those materials to rapidly change temperature. In response, those materials will expand and contract. While attempting to obey the laws of physics, these materials can often crack, thus letting water into your home.

Hydrostatic pressure isn’t the only cause of basement leaks. Other reasons your basement may begin to leak include:

  • Unstable foundation
  • Poor grading
  • Leaking pipes
  • Clogged drains

Will Your Homeowner’s Insurance Cover A Basement Leak?

Once you’ve determined what’s caused your basement to leak, you can file a claim with your insurance provider and see whether or not it’ll be honored.

As you might have guessed, insurance providers are picky about which leak claims they honor. The good news is that so long as a leak originated inside of your home, your claim has a high chance of netting you compensation. Some of the most common leaks that homeowner’s insurance covers include:

  • Leaking water heaters
  • Broken or burst pipes
  • Piping problems
  • Large appliance malfunctions

Do note that if it’s an appliance that’s caused a leak in your basement, your insurance provider may redirect you to that appliance’s manufacturer. If your appliance is still under warranty, it’ll be the manufacturer’s responsibility to replace the appliance and to compensate you for any damages. If the warranty has expired, you can turn to your homeowner’s insurance for a replacement appliance and with any repair fees.

When Won’t Your Insurance Provider Cover A Basement Leak?

Of course, there are some leaks that homeowner’s insurance won’t cover. As mentioned, it’s the leaks that originate inside of your home that are covered most often. Most insurance providers won’t honor your claim if it’s determined that the leak in question was caused by a force outside of your home.

Claims detailing the following leaks are most often rejected by insurance providers:

  • Environmental leaks
  • Leaks caused by the weather
  • Basement seepage

Note that these claims are often rejected when you’re trying to seek coverage through homeowner’s insurance. If you have emergency insurance or environmental insurance, you may be able to seek out compensation through alternative avenues.

Regardless, you should always talk to one of foundation and basement repair professionals in the Cleveland, OH, area when trying to determine the source of a basement leak. These professionals can determine the cause of a leak and recommend repairs. They’ll also be able to help you contest a denied claim, should an insurance provider misrepresent a leak in your home.

Ready to fix up your home and keep it dry? Reach out to one of the professionals in your area for a basement inspection and a free quote on leak repair services. When in doubt, talk to a professional about which waterproofing measures may suit your home best. If you’re lucky, you can get ahead of any potential leaks and better protect your home – and your wallet.