Wondering whether that withered white oak is ready to come down, or that the mangled maple might be on its last legs? There comes a time in every tree’s life cycle when its beauty and splendor run out and it becomes a liability rather than a beloved landscape feature. It may be that beautiful old tree in the front yard that gives your home character. Trees serve as longstanding companions to any home’s landscape. Until you need to get one removed. Getting rid of trees is an important part of maintaining your landscaping. Getting rid of small trees is probably something you can do yourself, but getting rid of larger trees is something professional tree removal services should handle. Will your homeowners’ insurance help you foot the bill? Let’s get into some specific situations to answer that question.
Understanding Your Homeowners Policy Coverage
Because there are a variety of different causes behind falling trees, there are also a variety of answers to if your homeowner’s insurance will cover your tree removal. When it comes to tree removal, you may have coverage in your homeowner’s policy for some scenarios but may not have coverage for others. Generally, homeowners insurance will cover any damage caused by a fallen tree. And sometimes even the clean-up process. The reason that the tree falls is important. Removal may be covered if a tree falls under the following scenarios, but only if it falls on your home, an outbuilding, or your driveway…
- Hail storms
- Under the weight of ice or snow
- Lightning and the resulting fire
- Other covered perils listed in your policy
In other words, it depends on the case of the falling tree and your individual homeowner insurance plan.
If You are Covered How Will the Coverage Work?
Make sure to consider your valuable trees when you determine how much homeowners insurance is right for you. If you are covered for falling tree damage and clean up, then your coverage will be subject to standard limits and your deductibles. Coverage for these disasters is generally limited to 5 percent of the amount of insurance on the structure of the house and most insurers will cap the coverage for any one tree, shrub, or plant.
How to File a Claim?
If a tree on your property falls on your house during a storm, for example, your homeowner’s insurance would likely cover the damage to your house caused by the tree. You would need to file a claim with your insurance carrier. Start with your insurance agent, and they will walk you through the process. But these days filing a claim can be even simpler, you can do it online or from your mobile phone.
What Happens if My Neighbor’s Tree Falls on My Property?
Typically, any damage caused by a tree that falls on your property – regardless of where the tree came from – is your responsibility. So, if a storm causes your neighbor’s oak tree to fall onto your property and damage your roof, you will need to file a claim with your insurance agent. The opposite is also true. Say your tree is struck by lightning and falls onto your neighbor’s roof. our neighbor will need to file a claim with his insurance company to cover that damage. However, if the fallen tree was poorly maintained or diseased and the owner took no steps to take care of it, the owner or their insurer could be responsible for the damages. If your neighbor or neighbor’s insurer makes a claim against you, the best practice is to call your insurance agent.
Preparation is the Best Way to Keep Your Home Safe From Falling Trees
- Root Zone Care – Proper root zone care is critical and entails aerating the root zone, proper irrigation, mulching, and fertilization to encourage the roots to be healthy. The healthier the roots, the more they grow, and the more they hold the tree in place.
- Remove rotting trees.
- Avoid planting trees too close to your home.
Understanding your policy and what is covered will help you in the event a tree falls and causes damage. Being careful and taking preventative measures is the best want to avoid falling tree damage.
Rollins Insurance is an independent insurance agency providing our clients the best prices with the most coverage possible since 2008. We represent multiple A-rated insurance companies to make sure we deliver the most competitive rate packages to our clients in Kentucky and Ohio. We find that most people are under-insured and over-paying when we meet them. We love what we do and our primary business is Personal Auto, Homeowners, and Life and Health insurance. We are a family-owned and managed business that specializes in providing needs-based insurance services.
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