California homeowners must review insurance to ensure adequate coverage

According to a recent survey conducted by, homeowners continue to be puzzled by their homeowners’ insurance policies, and unaware about the coverage the policies truly provide.

In some circumstances, the survey discovered that homeowners actually underestimate their coverage. For instance, a whopping 73 percent of surveyed homeowners are unaware that homeowners’ insurance will often cover the theft of property from a car.

Sadly however, the survey also found that homeowners have many misconceptions in which they overestimate their actual home insurance coverage – which can be especially difficult if homeowners don’t realize this mistake until after tragedy strikes and insurance claims are denied.

For example, roughly 60 percent of homeowners hold the mistaken belief that homeowners’ insurance will cover mold damage. Also, more than half of all homeowners surveyed were unaware that home insurance will generally not cover damage attributed to earthquakes – which is often expressly excluded in insurance policies.

While this recent survey was not specific to San Francisco, it does demonstrate many of the problems Bay Area homeowners face when dealing with

In fact, insurance companies can sometimes deny insurance claims solely on its own extremely broad interpretation of common homeowners’ insurance exclusions. Some of these customary exclusions in homeowners’ insurance policies include, but are not limited to:

  • Damages attributed to floods
  • Damages attributed to some natural disasters such as earthquakes, but also landslides
  • Damages attributed to aggressive dog breeds

Unfortunately, many homeowners may be completely oblivious to these exclusions until it is too late – as the recent survey illustrates. However, it is important to note that the broad interpretations of these exclusions are not as black and white as insurance companies would like homeowners to believe – for instance, when it comes to distinguishing between “flood” damage and “water” damage.

Following a large storm, insurance companies may argue that the resulting water damage was caused by flooding waters – particularly because insurance companies do not have to pay claims if the damage is attributed to a flood. However, it is quite possible that the water damage was not, in fact, caused by flooding water, but instead wind-blown rain – which would be covered by homeowners’ insurance. In instances such as these, it is important for homeowners to not simply blindly accept what insurance companies assert when denying a claim.

Consequently, if you are a homeowner who is currently in a claim dispute with your insurance company, it is often a good idea to contact an experienced insurance claims attorney to assist in your struggle. A skilled attorney can help investigate the true origins of home damage and aid in ensuring your claim in promptly paid.