Ice Storm Damage and Your Insurance Coverage
Are you wondering what might be covered by your insurance company after the recent ice storm? We’ll answer a few questions below about what may or may not be covered by your insurance policy.
A tree fell on my home. Will I be covered?
Your homeowner’s insurance policy will cover most damage to any buildings on your property due to a winter storm. That includes damage caused by falling trees or branches, ice, or debris from wind. A collapse of a structure, such as your roof, due to the weight of ice or snow is also often covered under a standard home insurance policy. If the damage is done by a tree on a neighbour’s property, their insurance policy should cover any damage to your home.
Many homeowners’ policies have standard deductibles of $1000, so you’ll have to figure out if it’s really worthwhile to make a claim, if the damage is minor.
Will the insurance company cover the removal of damaged branches from my property?
Probably not. Insurance covers damage to your fences, your roof, eaves troughs, windows, porches and outbuildings. But debris removal from your yard, with no physical property damage, will generally be at your own expense. Check with your insurance company to see if they will pay to remove the debris when you file your property damage claim.
Melting snow and ice has flooded my house. What happens now?
Flood damage inside your home, often due melted snow or ice in the winter, is usually covered under a standard homeowner’s policy. If your pipes freeze and burst and cause flooding inside your home, your standard policy may or may not cover the damages. Again, it is best to contact your insurance company.
I am unable to live in my home due to damage. Will I receive additional living expenses?
The Insurance Bureau of Canada says homeowners who are unable to live in their homes because of insurable damage are entitled to additional living expenses. Homeowners should contact their insurance company for more information.
My car was damaged due to ice and snow. Am I insured?
The Insurance Bureau of Canada says that damage to cars from ice, wind or water is typically covered if you have comprehensive or all-perils car insurance, but this coverage is optional so check your policy.