How do home insurance deductibles work 


Home insurance plays a vital role in keeping your property and belongings safe. It’s essential to understand how they work clearly to get the hang of home insurance deductibles. In this blog, we’ll take a closer look at the different parts of a home insurance policy, break down what deductibles are all about, and give you some helpful tips for choosing the right deductible for your needs.  


Breaking Down Home Insurance Sections

A typical home insurance policy is divided into several sections. Section one covers the dwelling building, detached structures, personal property, and additional living expenses. Other policy sections include personal liability coverage, endorsements, and floaters or scheduled items. Let’s focus on section one since we’re here to chat about deductibles!  


Understanding deductibles

A deductible is the amount of money you’re responsible for paying upfront in the event of a claim. This is before the insurance provider steps in to cover the remaining amount. For example, if your deductible is $1,500 and you experience a loss of $20,000, you would pay the initial $1,500, and your insurance provider would cover the remaining $18,500.   

It’s worth noting that opting for a higher deductible does reduce your upfront premium cost, but choosing a deductible that you can comfortably afford in case of a claim is crucial. Selecting an excessively high deductible might save you money initially but could cost you more in the long run. For instance, if your loss is $5,000 and your deductible is also $5,000, you would be responsible for the total amount, and the provider would not contribute as it’s the exact value of the loss. You’ll need to determine what deductible you’re comfortable with in the event you need to use it. 


Determining Deductibles

In section one of your home insurance policy, you can typically choose a deductible ranging from $500 to $5,000, depending on the insurance provider. The chosen deductible applies to all the components covered under section one rather than different deductibles for each part. The dwelling limit, also known as the limit an insurance company will pay to rebuild your home, is calculated based on the cost of rebuilding the home to similar quality and materials in the event of a total loss.   

The limits for detached structures, personal property, and additional living expenses are all determined as specific percentages of that overall dwelling limit. This, of course, varies by insurance company provider but will be similar across home insurance policies. If the limits for detached structures and personal property aren’t sufficient to cover your belongings, they can be increased accordingly. Remember, the calculations only consider the cost of rebuilding the home and do not include the value of the land.  


One Deductible for One Claim

 If a claim arises from a single incident and cause, you’re only responsible for one deductible payment. You aren’t required to pay a deductible for each component in section one. This ensures you won’t be burdened with multiple deductibles for a single claim.  


Personal Liability Coverage

Personal liability coverage constitutes a fundamental aspect of any home insurance policy. It provides coverage if you are found legally liable for damage or loss incurred by another party. For example, if someone slips and falls on the ice at your front door and sues you, personal liability insurance would cover the expenses associated with their claim.  

It’s important to note that no deductible applies to personal liability claims. We recommend opting for at least $2,000,000 in liability coverage to ensure comprehensive coverage, as $1,000,000 may not cover all scenarios and leave you financially vulnerable.  


Endorsements and Scheduled Items

The endorsement section of your policy allows you to add coverages that a standard policy may not include. You can choose a deductible for each endorsement, allowing you to customize this aspect of your policy. It must be equal to or higher than the deductible selected in section one. A typical endorsement we see is sewer backup coverage, which adds protection if the sewer system backs up into your home.  

Floaters and scheduled items encompass valuable possessions like furs, jewelry, sports card collections, boats, and travel trailers. You can incorporate these into your policy separately with higher limits or add them for coverage. Additionally, you can select a deductible for each item, starting at $0. As a heads up, the insurance company may require an appraisal based on the value you wish to insure the item for certain things you want to insure.


Home insurance deductibles play a crucial role in determining your financial responsibility in the event of a claim. You can make informed decisions about deductibles by understanding the different sections of your policy, such as section one, personal liability coverage, endorsements, and scheduled items.

Remember to choose a deductible that strikes the right balance between premium savings and your ability to cover the cost in case of a claim. By selecting appropriate deductibles and ensuring comprehensive coverage, you can have peace of mind knowing your home and assets are well protected. Learn more about home insurance coverage, and request a quote to get started. 


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