It’s summertime in Florida, which means one thing for many homeowners – the potential risk of hurricane damage to your home and external structures. This risk, which comes upon us annually, makes many Florida homeowners carefully examine their insurance policies for coverages that include exterior structures like fencing, garages, sheds, and more.
However, this is not the only time you should worry about insurance coverage for your fence. A storm may damage your fence, but so can a car crash, wild animal, or vandal that uses your fence for graffiti. If this happens to you, you should talk to your insurance provider about options for coverage to replace your fence.
Is my fence covered?
While each home insurance policy differs, most cover fencing under the “other structures” section. This section also covers things like your garage, shed, pool, and other valuable structures built on the property.
While your home insurance likely covers fence damage, it does not necessarily cover the entire cost of a new fence. Just like cars, fences depreciate over time, which means your insurance policy will likely only cover a percentage of its worth, not the cost to replace it with something new. If you have a 15-year-old wood fence, your home insurance policy will likely not pay for the cost to replace it with all new vinyl or wrought iron.
Limits and stipulations regarding coverage
Most “other structures” sections stipulate that fencing can be covered if it is damaged under the following structures:
- During a hurricane or other storm
- A vehicle crash
- Fallen trees from yours or a neighbor’s yard (unless it can be proven the tree was a known danger)
Unfortunately, most homeowners insurance does not cover fence damage under the following circumstances:
- Flooding (storm surge is sometimes counted as flooding even in the event of a hurricane)
- Sewer backup
- Preventable termite or insect damage
Your homeowners insurance will likely also limit the maximum dollar amount covered in a disaster. Most policies cover approximately 10% of the total policy amount for all repairs to fencing along with other valuable structures.
How to maximize coverage
While you can increase your coverage amount, this likely won’t increase the available coverage for your fence if the value of the fence does not improve. You can improve its value and slow depreciation by taking care of your fence, including washing, painting, and keeping gardens trimmed to prevent structural damage. Replacing old fencing can also ensure you get maximum coverage for your fence in the event of an emergency.
While FloriFence does not offer insurance for fencing, we do offer a one-year service guarantee and affordable repairs in the event your fence is accidentally damaged. To learn more about your options for fence repair and new installations, contact us today!