Homeowners insurance protects your home and personal property — that’s a no-brainer. But did you know that even the most basic, no-frills policy can cover a plethora of other unexpected things?

Here are 5 things you might not know your homeowners policy covers.

1. Medical bills for guests injured in your home

Having enough space to invite guests over is one of the perks of homeownership. (No more crowding 10 people in your tiny apartment to eat off paper plates while standing in the kitchen.)

Of course, entertaining company can have its own pitfalls — like awkward conversation or your sister’s clumsy boyfriend slamming the garden gate on his hand. And though home insurance can’t help with uncomfortable situations, it can help with medical expenses if a guest gets hurt while hanging out at your place.

Here’s the best part: you can count on coverage whether you were responsible for the injury or not.

2. Charges from the fire department

It’s strange, but true: many fire departments actually charge you for responding to a call. For instance, the Minnetonka Fire Department in Minnesota charges $250 for responding to a fire alarm initiated by a monitoring company. It makes sense, but it doesn’t mean you want to pay for it.

Thankfully, most homeowners policies could cover those fees (up to a certain limit, of course).

3. Your trees, plants, and grass (plus your garden gnome)

If someone drives through your front lawn and damages your yard, your homeowners policy can help you replace your shady trees, pretty petunias, and lovely grass. Which is handy, considering the cost of plants and landscaping these days.

Keep in mind that there’s a limit (typically about $500 per item), but you can always increase the coverage amount to meet your needs.

4. Your college student’s property

If your dependent child is a full-time college student living on campus, their stuff’s covered by your homeowners insurance policy (since, technically, their stuff is also yours). So, if someone steals your daughter’s laptop or a fire damages your son’s dorm room, your home insurer should take care of it.

Just one caveat: if they live off campus in an apartment, they’ll need renters insurance since homeowners won’t cover their belongings in that case.

5. Stuff in your fridge

I’ll let you in on a secret (okay, it’s more like inside expert knowledge): homeowners insurance can also cover all the goodies in your fridge. Say a big storm knocks out the power and everything in your fridge spoils. Well, don’t worry. Your homeowners coverage will likely step in to help.

Typically, coverage is capped at $500. But a deductible usually doesn’t apply — meaning you could replace your groceries without feeling the pinch in your wallet.

These unexpected coverages typically come standard on even the most basic policy. But if you go for the optional coverages, you can protect even more.

And hey, if you live in a state where Esurance offers homeowners insurance, get a free quote and see how we can help safeguard your home, cover your belongings, and protect your personal liability.


Homeowners 101


about Anne

If variety is the spice of a copywriter’s life, then Anne’s career at Esurance was akin to sassafras. From 2010 to 2014, she added a touch of zest to topics ranging from cleaning with baking soda to becoming a first-time homeowner.