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HO2 Provides Broad Form Homeowners Insurance Coverage

By Mike Heuer

In most states, the broad form coverage provided by an HO2 homeowners insurance policy is the most basic level of insurance protection available for a home or other property. The policy provides the same protection against the 11 perils outlined in HO1 policies, but with up to several additional perils protected against. As always, a deductible will apply and will be chosen by the policyholder.

Additional protection is provided up to policy limits for possible damages if the building collapses. That most likely might occur with while a home is being built or if a contractor or construction firm did not properly build the structure. Among other potential causes would be a foundation shifting or perhaps even termite damage undermining a structure.

For those living in cold climes and other areas, insurance is provided for damages caused by the weight of ice, snow and sleet. If enough accumulation piles up on a home, it could cause damage to eaves, overhangs, a rooftop or other part of the home. If a hole should open up in a rooftop, a massive amount of damage could be inflicted, particularly when the warmth from inside the home begins to melt the ice, snow or sleet and causes water damage or possibly damages electrical components. Similar damage could be caused by ice dams, which tend to work their way beneath shingles and can damage rooftops.

Another peril that is protected by a broad form policy would be damages caused by frozen pipes, heating and air conditioning systems and domestic appliances. If a water pipe were to freeze during a cold spell, it could burst can cause a great deal of damage, including internal flooding. The same is true if a water heater were to rupture and result in a great deal of water flooding a home. An air conditioning system also could leak from a bad condenser, and a heating system might spring a gas leak or cause other problems that potentially could destroy a home. The same is possible with a gas-burning oven or stovetop or any kind of electrical appliance that might cause an electrical fire.

Among other perils that are insured are falling objects, such as a tree limb that falls and damages a home up to a meteorite that might crash through a rooftop. If a power surge or other accidental cause were to strike in-home appliances, devices, fixtures or wiring and results in damage, the broad form homeowners policy offers insurance protection.

There is some basic level of coverage provided for personal belongings on a very limited basis, as is the case with an HO1 policy. That coverage has some portability, such as insuring a bicycle that is stolen while in use away from the home. And liability coverage also is provided up to policy limits with the HO2 policies.

For those wanting to have additional protection for specific personal items that greatly exceed what is provided with the broad form coverage, an endorsement could purchased that either insures valuables up to policy limits or for cash value, replacement cost or an agreed upon value. An endorsement can be added to any homeowners insurance plan and helps tailor coverage to specific needs.