Dealing with mold can be quite a headache for any homeowner. The damage it can cause can be quite extensive and can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars in repairs. Not to mention, it can be extremely detrimental to you or your family’s health.
In fact, there’s several types of mold and some are more dangerous than others. Mold can grow more rapidly in your home due to warmer climates or water damage. Ultimately, the best way to avoid this stressful situation is to regularly clean your home and monitor it for any water damage. However, we can’t always prevent disasters from striking.
In this article we will discuss whether or not mold is covered under your homeowners insurance policy.
Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Mold?
Mold in houses usually grows because of excessive moisture from high humidity or water leaks. This type of water damage is provided no coverage under your homeowners insurance. That’s because that type of damage is gradual and happens over time. Therefore, any repairs necessary would come out of your pocket.
However, there are certain instances in which homeowners insurance covers water damage and mold infestations. Your policy may cover an instance where a hot water heater bursts and causes water damage and mold. If the water damage or mold occurs suddenly, such as a hot water heater bursting then file a claim with your provider. In most cases they would cover the cost of such damages.
In insurance terminology, the phenomenon is known as “proximate cause.” That means if the damages occurs due to an insured peril, the insurer will cover the loss.
Many insurance firms cap mold repairs and removal payouts at $10,000. However, you can buy additional mold coverage to increase your payout limit to $50,000. The add-on can also broaden the coverage to “mold growth causes” that are not covered by the original policy.
It’s worth mentioning that some states require insurance companies to offer policyholders some type of mold coverage. States like New York, South Carolina, North Carolina, New Jersey, and Florida require insurers to cover between $5,000 and $50,000 in mold removal and repairs no matter what caused it.
In What Instances Does Your Policy Cover Mold?
Keep in mind that mold that develops because of accidental and sudden water damage such as a burst pipe, is covered by homeowners insurance. Here are some more instances where your homeowners insurance will cover mold damage.
Hot Water Heater Ruptures
If a hot water heater bursts and causes considerable damage, you may be covered if mold appears. Mold can develop on the surrounding walls and floors so if this happens then file a claim with your provider immediately.
Washing Machine Leaks
If a washing machine with no prior mechanical problem manages to leak and cause mold growth behind the appliance your provider may cover the repairs.
A Fire Being Extinguished
If mold forms from a fire that was extinguished whether from a sprinkler or firefighter, you may be covered.
Keep in mind that these instances vary and whether or not you’re covered from mold is dependent on your provider and your policy. If mold damage is a concern for you then talk with your provider and see what your policy covers. If anything you may be able to add on some extra coverage for mold related damages.
When is Mold Damage Not Covered?
Mold that develops due to leaky plumbing, flooding, and high humidity will typically not be covered under your homeowners insurance policy. Your policy also doesn’t cover property damage that arises due to the homeowner’s negligence and maintenance problems. That is to say, if your insurance company finds out that the mold growth in your home was preventable, they’ll likely deny your claim.
Mold is a serious problem that can affect you and your home. If it develops slowly over time, most home insurance companies won’t cover it. However, in some cases your provider will cover the mold damage. You’ll need to talk to your insurer to understand whether or not you have coverage for mold related damages.