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A standard home insurance policy covers damage caused by the weight of snow or ice.

If snow builds up on your roof and causes damage or collapse, your insurance will cover it. However, it’s important to note that you are expected to take steps to prevent damage, which includes clearing snow when possible to prevent ice dams and heavy snow buildup.

Of course, it’s not always possible to clear snow fast enough or effectively, especially in a heavy winter storm. And when unavoidable damage happens, home insurance is there.

Key Takeaways

  • Home insurance covers winter storm damage, including the weight of snow or ice to your roof.
  • You’re responsible for taking steps to prevent snow and ice from damaging your home.
  • When you file a claim for winter storm damage, you will be responsible for the deductible.

Does home insurance cover winter storm damage?

Common types of winter storm damage that generally are covered under a standard home insurance policy include:

  • Roof repair. Damage to your roof from snow, ice, sleet or wind are covered, as is roof replacement as necessary.
  • Burst pipes. If the pipes freeze and burst, the damage will be covered.
  • Gutter “ice dams.” When water freezes in gutters, it can run into homes and damage ceilings and walls. Ice dams are covered by home insurance.
  • Fallen trees. If a tree falls on your home or detached garage, home insurance generally covers repairing the structure and removing the tree, up to a specified limit.

Although insurance may cover many winter storm-related costs, you must pay your deductible before coverage kicks in.

When doesn’t home insurance cover winter storm damage?

There may be circumstances where costs are excluded from an insurance policy. For example, if a tree near your home was rotting and a winter storm caused it to topple onto your house, the insurer might not cover the damages if it determines you neglected to properly maintain the tree so your home was not at risk.

Your insurance company requires you to take reasonable steps to protect your home from damage. That includes clearing snow as much as you can and making sure everything is in good working order.

If you travel for the winter, you must make sure your home stays heated to prevent frozen pipes form bursting. Make sure someone is checking on your home while you’re away.

Although home insurance covers most winter-weather damage, regular home maintenance prevents many of those disasters from happening in the first place and can save you from making an insurance claim and paying a deductible.



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