4 Surprising Costs That May Be Covered By Your Homeowners Insurance

You probably know that your homeowners policy covers damage to your home from things like fire and extreme weather. However, homeowners insurance doesn't just cover home damage. In fact, it covers a wide range of costs and expenses, many of which you may not even think would be covered by a homeowners insurance policy.

Below are four such surprising costs. If any of these sound familiar, you may want to check with your homeowners insurance agent to see if you're eligible for coverage. Also, be sure to check how a claim may impact your premium. Frequent claims sometimes affect your coverage and your policy cost, so do your research before filing one.

Spoiled food. Did a power outage cause you to lose a significant amount of food in your refrigerator or freezer? Did a storm or other weather event knock out power for so long that you have to completely restock your kitchen? This can be a costly and frustrating problem. You may want to save your receipt from the grocery store, though. Most homeowners policies cover the replacement of perishable food items due to a power loss. There's usually a cap on the covered amount, so be sure to check with your agent.

Guest injuries. Did you recently have a guest suffer an injury in your home? Or did a child playing on your property suffer an injury? If so, you may be worried about a lawsuit from the injured guest. Even if a guest isn't going to sue, you may feel obligated to help them with their costs. Most homeowners insurance policies will cover the medical bills of a guest under the liability portion of the policy. In most cases, it doesn't even matter if you are responsible for the injury. It just has to happen on your property.

Slander or libel. Are you facing a lawsuit related to slander or libel? Any judgment or settlement could also be covered under your homeowners policy. Most policies come with a general liability coverage that can be used for almost any purpose, including lawsuit settlements related to slander or libel. There's often a cap on the coverage and if the judgment is sizable, the insurance company could challenge it. However, this protection is available as an option to reduce your out-of-pocket costs.

Student property. Do you have a college student who lives in an on-campus dorm? If so, their property may be included under your policy. That could be helpful if they suffer damage to an expensive item like a computer or a television. Keep in mind, though, that this may only cover on-campus housing. If your student rents an off-campus apartment, they may need to buy their own renters insurance policy. Check with your agent for more information.

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