Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Water Damage to Siding?

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Andrew Lee is insurance content writer and editor for Andrew holds a Bachelor's degree from Ryerson University and has extensive experience of writing content for financial websites. His expertise is especially strong in home and auto insurance.

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The dwelling coverage in your average homeowners policy may potentially pay for damage to your home’s structure from a covered peril as well as anything permanently attached to it, which comprises damaged siding, up to the limits set in your policy and, of course, minus your deductible. Carefully read over the terms of your insurance policy in order to comprehend which dangers are covered and whether your damaged siding would be protected for the entire cost of replacement or its cash value.

Homeowners Insurance and Replacing Siding

Severe weather is one of the most typical causes of damaged siding, for instance, if your siding is torn off by strong winds. It’s possible that your homeowners insurance may cover instances of severe weather or storm damage, including water damage, if these occurrences are listed as covered perils on your insurance policy. It’s also possible that your insurance may cover siding damaged from perils that aren’t strictly weather-related, such as:

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  • Malicious mischief and outright vandalism
  • Damage resulting from aircraft
  • Smoke and fire
  • Damage resulting from vehicles 

Exactly When Is Siding Not Covered by Homeowners Insurance?

Just like any other part of your home, siding isn’t covered by home insurance against daily wear and tear and the resulting deterioration. So, in the case of your siding having deteriorated over time or damage being caused by neglect on your part, you, as the home owner, are responsible for the cost of repair or replacement. Homeowners insurance will also not reimburse you for work done for merely cosmetic reasons or the cost of replacing or repairing siding that was already damaged when you bought the house or at the time you purchased the insurance policy.

Filing an Insurance Claim For Siding Damage

Your insurance agent may question you about the exact extent of and cause of the damage in order to learn more about precisely what has happened. Furthermore, remember that if the damage is relatively minor, you should perhaps get an estimate before filing a formal claim with your insurance agency. If the repairs are less than the deductible listed in your policy, filing a claim may prove not to be worthwhile.

Closer Examination

Let’s do a closer examination of exactly when and how homeowners insurance will cover siding.

As stated above, homeowners insurance will provide coverage for damage to siding resulting from a covered peril. However, be aware that it can become a more complex matter when your insurance agency needs to match the replacement siding to the siding that you already have. And, as previously stated, siding that is damaged due to home owner neglect will not be replaced.

Normally such perils as fire, hail, water damage, hurricanes, tornadoes, and even fallen trees are covered by your homeowners insurance.

Your insurance provider will not cover your expenses if the deterioration in the siding is caused by age and the usual wear and tear that comes with it. Also, they will not cover damaged siding if they have reason to believe that you as the policyholder have been lax in your duty to repair and maintain your siding, which includes painting it, cleaning it on a regular basis, etc.

You might want to invest in a power washer for cleaning steel and cement siding, while wood and vinyl siding can be effectively cleaned with a hose.

New Information About Siding Damage Claims

Due to the difficulty involved in replacing partially damaged siding, some states have created new laws that make it necessary for insurance agencies to replace all siding in the event of a disaster, even undamaged areas, with new siding if that’s what it takes to make the siding match. Otherwise, the value of your home may be reduced, as no one finds mismatched siding attractive.

Types of Coverage Under Your Homeowners Insurance

Dwellings are ordinarily protected on a replacement cost basis, which is where there is sometimes tension, as your insurer is required to replace your siding in an appropriate manner.

However, if instead, you have actual cash value coverage for your dwelling, it’s possible that your insurance agency may not be as willing to replace all of your siding if you suffer only a partial loss. Actual cash value coverage takes into consideration depreciation, which translates to your receiving a smaller payment if the siding is older due to the fact that its condition, and as a result, its value, has decreased with the passage of time.

Matching Coverage Home Insurance

Certain insurance agencies have tried to beat the cost of potentially mismatched siding by adding matching coverage homeowners insurance endorsements to the policies they issue. This means that your insurance provider will cover the expense of replacing undamaged siding so that it matches new, replacement siding after a covered loss.

This type of coverage will cost you a bit extra when paying for your policy, but at least you won’t need to worry so much about siding damage insurance claims and reimbursement.

Once again it seems that your homeowners insurance coverage does cover your damaged siding whether it results from water damage, or some other type of damage, but it depends largely upon the circumstances under which the damage occurred. There must be no signs of home owner neglect or ignoring your duty to maintain your siding to the best of your ability, as with all other parts of your home.

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Andrew Lee is insurance content writer and editor for Andrew holds a Bachelor's degree from Ryerson University and has extensive experience of writing content for financial websites. His expertise is especially strong in home and auto insurance.