You may need additional living expenses coverage in your home insurance policy.
If a natural disaster were to destroy your home structure, you may be forced to move out of your home until it’s repaired. When you cannot live in your home because of a loss covered by your home insurance policy, such as a hurricane or tornado, your insurer is able to reimburse you for certain expenses that you occur while you’re living away from home. This is called additional living expenses coverage.
What does this coverage include?
The additional living expenses coverage in your home insurance is designed to cover the costs associated with loss of use of your home, including those of a hotel room, restaurant meals, and transportation.
How am I reimbursed?
You must file a claim with your home insurance company as soon as possible. Generally, this coverage will pay for the gap between pre- and post- disaster housing and food. For example, if you usually spend $500 a month for food, but you now spend $750 because you have lost use of your kitchen and must eat out, your insurer will may pay for the $250 difference.
What is not included?
Items that are not considered additional living expenses are belongings such as toiletries, clothing, temporary repairs to your home, entertainment expenses (unfortunately, going to the movies because you’ve lost use of your TV doesn’t count!), and your normal mortgage bills.
Can I obtain coverage if my home was damaged by a flood?
The damages caused by floods are not covered at all in home insurance policies, and most separate flood insurance policies do not provide additional living expenses coverage. Talk to a trusted insurance agent for advice on obtaining coverage.