Buying standard home insurance coverage is a good start -- it is better than not having any coverage -- but sometimes it is not enough. There are two main reasons for this: first, standard coverage has limits that may not be adequate for some of your valuable items. Second, standard coverage may leave out some of your belongings. For that reason, you should consider adding these riders to your standard coverage to get full protection:
You Run a Home Business
More and more people are staring home businesses either as side income or as their main jobs. Whatever your motivation is for starting a home business, you should know that your standard home insurance doesn't cover the risks your business may face or the damages your business may cause. For example, your home insurance may not come to your rescue if your work computer is stolen or your home bakery catches fire. Similarly, your standard home insurance coverage will not protect you if a customer sues you for getting injured in your home.
You Have a Second Home
If you have multiple homes, then you should confirm whether the coverage for your primary residence extends to your other homes. In most cases, the coverage will not extend to your second home, and even if it does it may be restricted to a few risks. For example, you may find that liability coverage is extended to your second home but contents or structure insurance is not. This makes sense, since second homes are usually more exposed to theft and damage risks than primary residences.
You Have High-Value Items
Standard home insurance coverage often comes with limits and sub-limits for different items. The sub-limits typically apply to high-value items such as electronics, jewelry, firearms, and collector's items, among other things. For example, you may find yourself with hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of jewelry, whereas your jewelry coverage is capped at $3,000. That means that even if your hundred thousand dollar family heirloom is stolen, you will only get $3,000 for it.
You Regularly Rent Out Your Home
Many people make extra money by renting out their homes when they are away or by renting out unused rooms. For example, if your children are away in college, you may make extra money from their rooms by renting them out to short-term guests. However, your home insurance carrier may not bear all the risks when such renter disappears with your TV set, or if a renter sues you for liability after slipping and falling in your home.