What is dwelling coverage?

Dwelling coverage is the part of your insurance that would pay for the complete rebuild or repair of your home’s structure after a covered event occurs. Typically, it provides coverage in the event of the following:

  • Damage from lightning strikes
  • Fire and/or smoke damage
  • Windstorm damage
  • Hailstorm damage
  • Damage from an explosion
  • Vandalism
  • Damage caused by falling objects
  • Damage caused by an aircraft or a motor vehicle

What does dwelling insurance cover?

Specifically, your dwelling refers to your house’s structure as well as the plumbing, heating, permanently installed air-conditioning systems and electrical wiring. Dwelling coverage may also apply to attached structures, such as garages, porches and decking.

Dwelling insurance does not cover damage from floods, earthquakes, sewer backups or any damage that occurs due to a "lack of maintenance." It’s your responsibility as the homeowner to properly maintain your home—this includes things like checking for leaks or insect infestations, unclogging drains, repairing or replacing siding, cleaning your fireplace flue and inspecting your roof for missing or damaged shingles. A “lack of maintenance” would mean that you failed to keep up on these common tasks as the homeowner.

Additional dwelling home insurance considerations

When selecting dwelling coverage, base your limits on what it will cost to rebuild your home - not its current market value - if you suffer a loss. This is because the cost of labor and materials is continuing to rise, and if your house suffers damage 10 years from now, it would not cost the same amount to rebuild it as it would today.

Want to be sure you have the proper dwelling home insurance? Learn more about Home Market Value vs. Home Replacement Cost.