Homes are expensive, and having a solid homeowners insurance policy to protect that home is crucial – especially when you decide to put in upgrades. For some folks, those upgrades don’t stop at the door. Custom landscaping is becoming increasingly popular – and increasingly expensive – and knowing if, and when, your homeowners insurance will cover custom landscaping can be useful.
Generally speaking, standard homeowners insurance policies will cover trees and other plants against very specific threats in a similar fashion to how it protects your home. Those threats can include fire, lightning, explosions, vandalism, riots, theft and damage caused by someone else’s vehicle. Before you decide to invest significantly in your landscaping, you should know that this coverage is not without limits. Individual policies will vary, but a typical homeowners insurance policy will limit coverage for landscaping to a percentage of the dwelling coverage. There are also usually limits on how much will be paid out for each individual plant or shrub, so be careful before deciding if you want expensive, exotic plants surrounding your home.
When it comes to damage to the home as a result of landscaping mishaps, such as fallen trees, your homeowners insurance may or may not provide you with protection. If you live in an area where fallen trees are a threat, or if you plan to have trees put in by a landscaper, you’ll want to make sure you understand what kind of coverage you have if one of them damages your home. If no coverage exists, buying an insurance rider to tack on to your homeowners insurance would be a good idea.
Some insurance companies offer optional packages that are designed specifically to cover landscaping. These policies will help cover the cost of removing debris from fallen trees, or even increase the landscaping coverage limit on your original homeowners policy.