The purpose of insurance is to pay for home repair work or replacement costs, so a quality insurance plan should cover the events (or perils) that cause significant, costly damage. Policies usually specify covered losses, but some risks Indiana residents face are not part of a standard insurance plan.
- Flood damage: According to recent studies by the First Street Foundation, flooding is a leading concern for Indiana homeowners. The risk of flood damage, whether from living in a flood plain near Lake Erie or significant rainfall, is 67% higher than government data predictions. Minor water damage — from a broken pipe, for example — is usually eligible for coverage under a standard home insurance policy, but not property damage from environmental flooding.
- Tornado damage: Indiana is one of the many states located in Tornado Alley. According to government-provided weather data, Indiana had 16 tornadoes in 2022. Most often, tornadoes occur in the spring and summer. Damages from these storms are generally high, with homeowners bearing the costs of rebuilding entire homes and replacing lost personal property.
- Wind and hail damage: Severe damage from hail and strong winds is also a concern for Indiana residents. In years past, State Farm listed the state as one of the top 10 in the nation for hail damage claims. While small hail can leave dings or dents in roofing materials, larger hail can shatter skylights, rip off gutters, go through roofing shingles and tear off exterior paint.
In many of the above situations, basic insurance protection will not provide enough coverage for a homeowner. One reason is the lack of inclusion of some of the above risks in a standard policy.
Protecting your home from possible physical destruction can help you maintain a clean claims history. While insurance is a protective option, filing claims increases your premium. To keep your rates low, you can invest in the following safety features to protect against storm damage:
- Install impact-rated skylights
- Use fiber-cement siding
- Secure windows with storm shutter
- Choose a steep-sloped roof
To avoid flood damage in your home, you can add foundation vents or a sump pump. You can also use grading to improve drainage or elevate your home if building near a flood plain. An insurance agent can help you narrow down the direct risks you face as a homeowner.
Recommended Home Insurance Coverage in Indiana
Under a standard HO-3 policy, homeowners have coverage for several crucial events:
- Damage to a home’s structure
- Damage or loss to personal belongings
- Liability in case of injury or damage to a third party
In many cases, this form of homeowners insurance coverage also includes the cost of additional living expenses if you have to vacate your home due to a covered risk.
However, a standard HO-3 policy doesn’t cover some risks prevalent in Indiana, such as flooding. When shopping for insurance, it’s important to consider insurers that offer the endorsements you need against certain risks.
Protection against heavy flooding damage isn’t usually a part of a standard homeowner policy. American Family is one company that offers an endorsement for inland flooding. For additional quotes, you can look to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Managed by FEMA, the NFIP provides flood insurance to those living in flood plains through dozens of reputable insurers around the country.
Loss of Use Coverage
Loss of use coverage, also called Schedule D coverage, is another important endorsement to consider in areas where tornadoes and hurricanes are common. It pays for the expenses of trying to find temporary living arrangements while construction for repairs or rebuilding takes place. Coverage only applies when the damage occurred is due to a covered peril.
Higher Coverage Limits
Although not always offered as an endorsement, you may consider increasing the limits on your home insurance to address certain risks. In cases of serious damage and loss, your policy may not pay out what you need to replace your items. Some companies offer endorsements that provide funding for specific areas of exposure. While these may have different names across the providers, common add-ons for high-limit coverage include:
- Personal belongings coverage
- Replacement cost for belongings
- Extra jewelry coverage
- Guaranteed replacement
Many of our top six providers in Indiana offer endorsement options to keep your dwelling and personal property fully covered. Getting multiple quotes and comparing providers can give you an idea of how much protection you can get within your budget.
Alice J. Roden started working for Trending Insurance News at the end of 2021. Alice grew up in Salt Lake City, UT. A writer with a vast insurance industry background Alice has help with several of the biggest insurance companies. Before joining Trending Insurance News, Alice briefly worked as a freelance journalist for several radio stations. She covers home, renters and other property insurance stories.