Power surge, covered on your home insurance?

With the sweltering temperatures we have been experiencing this summer usually not far behind are thunder and lightning storms. I usually try not to get too technical on this blog, but sometimes I think it is warranted. So off we go…

There are several versions of the home-owner’s insurance policy, but for this discussion I will focus on the ISO 2000 HO-3 version. Lightning damage to your home or your personal property is covered on your home-owner’s insurance policy. Problems arise when there is a “artificially generated electric current”. To you and I that is fancy talk for a power surge.  There is an exclusion in the policy that reads in part “…electronic components or circuitry that are part of appliances, fixtures, computers, home entertainment units or other types of electronic apparatus.” In today’s “high tech” homes a good amount of personal property contains these excluded items and costs for damage could add up quickly. Keep in mind too, this limitation of coverage applies to personal property only and not to building property. Thus, items such as a built-in range, central air conditioning system, or home alarm system would not be subject to the limitation and would be covered for “power surge” claims.

So what can you do to fix this problem? Glad you asked. You can choose the HO-5 form which basically changes your policy to an open perils policy. This means the policy does not list the perils your home and personal property are covered for; rather it lists your home and personal property does notcover. This is the most extensive coverage offered for home insurance. The premium is typically 10% of the base premium – an excellent deal no doubt.

If your homeowner’s insurance policy is written on the 1991 version then you can add coverage simply by requesting the HO 00 15 (Special Personal Property Coverage) endorsement.

If you have any questions regarding power surges or what is covered on your policy feel free to call our offices at 781-293-5500 (Pembroke), 508-747-0030 (Plymouth), 508-428-6919 (Osterville).

The above is meant as general information and as general policy descriptions to help you understand the different types of coverages available to you. Always consult your policy for actual coverages and exclusions.

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