Optional Homeowners Coverages: Add-Ons Available To Choose

Optional Coverages For Homeowners Insurance

In addition to standard homeowners insurance policy, your insurance company may offer additional coverages to supplement your policy. 

Optional coverages are designed mainly for two purposes:

  • Offer extra financial protection for the specific things that you own.
  • Minimize risk exposure in specific scenarios that you might experience.

Some optional coverages may be added on and taken off to cover a temporary need while others may be required to stay on the entire policy term.

Keep in mind that your standard homeowners insurance policy may already have basic coverages for many of these items. Check your policy declarations page and with your insurance agent for more information. 

List of optional coverages that are offered by most insurance companies:

Business Property

Identity Theft Restoration

Sports Equipment

Green Improvement

Yard and Garden

Electronic Data Recovery

Music Instrument

Water Backup

Building Codes

Scheduled Personal Property

Scheduled Personal Property

Business Property

Property that is mainly used for the purpose of conducting business. Coverage could include computer equipment such as a work laptop or any business inventory you store at home.

Identity Theft Restoration

This coverage provides reimbursement to expenses incurred as a direct result of identity theft.

Examples of services and coverage limits under this policy:

  • Expenses to retain professional services to assist and address the effects of identity theft: $2,000 limit.
  • Lost wages as result of taking time off from work to handle the identity theft issues: $250 max per day, up to $5,000 combined.
  • Attorney fees in case of any lawsuits against you from collection agencies.
  • Other miscellaneous expenses relating to correspondences needed to resolve the issue relating to identity theft restoration. 

Sports Equipment

High-value golf set, ski, treadmill, scuba diving gear, climbing gear, etc.

Most standard homeowners insurance will include coverage of these equipment, but may have limitations when it comes to theft, especially for items that are frequently used and can easily be taken. 

Green Improvement

Green improvement coverage will provide replacement cost of covered property that performs a similar function and is more energy efficient as identified by the Energy Star label.

Qualified items are Energy Star labeled products from one of these home categories:

  • Appliances Computers and electronics
  • Heating and cooling equipments
  • Lighting and fans
  • Plumbing 

Yard and Garden

Yard and garden coverage provides financial protection up to a predetermined amount for any single tree, shrub, or plant, and it includes cost to remove debris after a covered loss.

Typically the coverage amount is $1,000 per item. 

This coverage only applies to sudden and accidental direct physical loss caused by covered perils such as fire, vandalism, or theft.

Electronic Data Recovery

Electronic data recovery coverage will cover expenses incurred for hiring of a recovery firm for lost electronic data.

This coverage will only apply if the loss is resulted from:

  • Sudden and accidental direct physical loss to the equipment.
  • Vandalism or malicious mischief that corrupts, harms the system including a computer virus.

Music Instrument

Guitar, violin, clarinet, saxophone, cello, etc.

Most homeowners insurance will include standard coverage of these instruments, but may have limits especially when it comes to theft.

If there are high-value instruments that are worth thousands or more, it is recommended to schedule each of them individually for full financial protection.

Water Backup

Just like its name, water backup coverage protects your home in the event that water backs up from your sewer line, such as water backing up from the toilet due to a clogged sewer line. In addition to sewer line backup, it provides coverage for water damage as result of sump pump overflow or failure.

What benefits are included in the coverage?

First and foremost, this coverage will pay for emergency and temporary repair to mitigate further damage to your home. After mitigating the damage, the coverage will reimburse you for:

  • Debris removal
  • Restoration 
  • Repair or replacement of damaged property within your dwelling
  • Additional living expense

Keep in mind that the amount of benefits must fall within the coverage limit and that there is typically a deductible for this coverage. 

More information: Water Backup Coverage.

Building Codes

After a covered loss, the Building Codes coverage will cover any increased cost incurred due to compliance with local building codes during a repair or rebuild of your home.

Additional demolition cost to meet local guidelines and regulations is also included in this coverage. 

Scheduled Personal Property

Standard homeowners insurance includes coverage for your personal property, but there are specific coverage limits for high-value items such as jewelries and antiques.

In order to adequately cover these valuables, you can add a scheduled personal property endorsement onto your homeowners policy. A scheduled personal property endorsement allows itemization of your valuables at their recent appraised value, so you are not limited to the standard limits of homeowners insurance. 

More information: Scheduled Personal Property Coverage.