Because some risks are considered uninsurable
Take the time to familiarize yourself with the exclusions included in your policy that your insurance company will not provide coverage for, so you can avoid nasty surprises.
Don’t wait until you need to make a claim on your home insurance policy to familiarize yourself with what is—and isn’t—included as coverage. Even the most comprehensive home insurance policies exclude a number of circumstances and perils, as they are deemed to be uninsurable risks.
List of home insurance exclusions
Most basic home insurance policies sold in Ontario contain similar exclusions, which are generally predictable or preventable events. The details may differ slightly between insurers; however, several categories of exclusions are common to all insurance companies and all policies, including comprehensive coverage.
Home insurance exclusions typically include:
- Losses due to war including terrorism and nuclear risks
- Freezing outside the home: Damage caused to the exterior of your home by freezing, heaving caused by frost, or a snow slide.
- Governmental seizure or destruction of property
- Frozen indoor plumbing: Damage from frozen indoor plumbing, unless you take specific precautions as outlined in your policy.
- Illegally acquired property Losses or damage to illegally acquired property.
- Intentional application of heat
- Intentional loss: Intentional or criminal acts committed by you (fraud).
- Losses caused by criminal acts by the policyholder
- Pollution Damage from contaminants or pollutants, unless the loss or damage results from the sudden and accidental bursting or overflowing of your home’s oil tank or pipes;
- Vermin: Damage caused by insects and rodents such as termites, squirrels, mice, or any other animals.
- Wear-and-tear: Damage caused by wear and tear, rust, corrosion, mold, or gradual deterioration.
- Ground movements: Damage caused by earthquakes, landslides, and other earth movements. Damage from a fire or explosion caused by earth movement, however, would normally be covered.
- Flooding Water damage caused by a flood or flood water.
Optional coverage is available
If there is a particular situation or peril that concerns you, ask your insurance expert about coverage options for it, known as endorsements. To protect your home against generally excluded perils, such as earthquakes, sewer backup, and floods, you may be able to purchase optional coverage. There’s no harm in asking for a quote to add an endorsement to your homeowners policy and then decide if it is worth it or not.