Terms to Know - Homeowners Insurance

Additional Living Expenses

In certain circumstances, your insurance will help to cover expenses such as moving costs, a hotel room, storage and more. For example:

  • If your home is considered unfit to live in due to an insured peril and you have to move out while the damage is being repaired, your plan will cover necessary and reasonable additional living expenses.
  • If you are denied access to your home by a civil authority because of damage to a neighbouring premises due to an insured peril, your plan will cover a necessary and reasonable increase in living expenses for up to two weeks.
  • If a mass evacuation is ordered due to a sudden and accidental event within Canada or the U.S., your plan will cover any necessary and reasonable increase in living expenses to a maximum of $2,500 for the period access is prohibited, not exceeding 30 days from the date of the order of evacuation.
  • If you rent part of your home or a detached structure out to a tenant and he or she is forced to leave because of an insured loss, your plan will reimburse the fair rental value while the repairs are being made.

All Perils Coverage

Provides protection against the widest range of risks for your home, detached private structures and personal belongings and only excludes the perils specifically listed in your policy.

Deductible

This is the amount you must pay out-of-pocket for each claim before your insurance policy pays.

Deductible Waiver

If your claim exceeds $25,000, and the applicable deductible amount on your Certificate of Property Insurance is $1,000 or less, the deductible will not apply to your claim.

Detached Private Structures

Includes a storage shed, fence or other structure separate from your home itself, but located on your property.

Dwelling/Building

Includes:

  • Your home itself and attached structures
  • Permanently installed outdoor equipment on your property
  • Outdoor swimming pool and attached equipment on your property
  • Materials and supplies located on or adjacent to your property that are being used to build, alter or repair your home or detached private structures on your property. (We insure against theft only when your home is completed and ready to be occupied.)

Guaranteed Replacement Cost

If Guaranteed Replacement cost is listed on your Certificate of Property Insurance, your policy will cover the cost of repairs or replacement even if it is more than the amount of insurance listed for your dwelling/building, provided certain conditions are met.

Liability Coverage

Protects you financially if you unintentionally cause bodily injury or property damage to others—at your home or anywhere in the world. For example, this coverage protects you financially if:

  • A babysitter slips on a spill on your kitchen floor and injures her back.
  • A dead tree in your yard falls and hits your neighbour's roof, causing damage.
  • You throw a baseball on the beach while on vacation in Florida and you accidentally knock out a bystander's tooth.

Liability coverage helps protect you whether someone sues you or not:

  • Your policy will pay for property damage or personal injury you unintentionally cause even if you are not legally liable.
  • If someone does sue you due to injury or property damage covered by your policy, the costs associated with your defence are covered by your policy.

Tip: Purchase as much liability coverage as you can afford—we recommend at least $1 million in coverage and offer up to $2 million in coverage.

Non-owned Property

Your policy provides coverage for personal property belonging to others while it is in your possession or belonging to an employee of your residence travelling for or with you (if the property has no other insurance coverage.) However, property of tenants or boarders who are not related to you is excluded.

Personal Belongings/Contents

Includes items such as furniture, televisions, computers, washer/dryer, clothes, etc. inside your home or on your property.

Tip: Update your personal belongings inventory at least once a year. Photograph or videotape all your belongings and keep a record of serial numbers and receipts where applicable in a secure location (such as a safety deposit box.) If you ever make a claim, your visual record of the missing or damaged items will make the process much easier.

Property in Your Vehicle

Your policy provides coverage for theft, attempted theft or burglary of personal property that is inside or on any vehicle that is parked on or away from your premises.

Personal Property at Other Locations

Your policy provides coverage for personal property while it is temporarily away from your premises, anywhere in the world. However, personal property normally kept at any other location you own or rent is not insured. Uninsured personal property belonging to others while it is in your possession or belonging to an employee of your residence travelling for or with you is covered.

Personal property stored in a secured storage facility is insured for 30 days only, from the date the property was first stored. We will continue coverage beyond that period for theft only, subject to the applicable policy coverages, conditions, limits and exclusions.

Replacement Cost

This means the lower of, on the date of the loss or damage:

  • Cost of repairing the property with materials of similar kind and quality; or
  • Cost of new articles of similar kind, quality and usefulness, without any deduction for depreciation

Tip: Your replacement cost coverage should reflect what it would cost to rebuild or replace your damaged building—not the amount for which you could sell your property. In addition, this amount should exclude the value of your land. If you're not sure, please call 1-877-749-7224 and we will assist you.

Specified Perils Coverage

Subject to the exclusions and conditions in your policy, Specified Perils mean:

  • Fire
  • Lightning
  • Explosion
  • Smoke due to a sudden, unusual and faulty operation of any heating or cooking unit in or on the premises
  • A falling object which strikes the exterior of the building
  • Impact by aircraft, watercraft or land vehicle
  • Riot
  • Vandalism or malicious acts, not including loss or damage caused by theft or attempted theft
  • Water damage, meaning damage caused by:
    • the sudden and accidental escape of water from a watermain
    • the sudden and accidental escape of water or steam from within a plumbing, heating, sprinkler, air conditioning system or domestic water container, which is located inside your dwelling
    • the sudden and accidental escape of water from a domestic water container located outside your dwelling (such damage is not covered when the escape of water is caused by freezing)
    • water which enters your dwelling through an opening which has been created suddenly and accidentally by a peril not otherwise excluded
    • the backing up or escape of water from an eaves trough or down spout, or by ice damming, provided the water has not entered through a basement or foundation wall
  • Windstorm or hail, including loss or damage caused by weight of ice, snow, or sleet. This peril does not include loss or damage to your personal property within a building, caused by windstorm, hail or coincidental rain damage unless the storm first creates an opening in the building.
  • Transportation, meaning loss or damage to your personal property caused by collision, upset, overturn, derailment, stranding or sinking of any motorized vehicle or attached trailer in which the insured property is being carried. This would also apply to any conveyance of a common carrier, but does not include loss or damage to property in a vacation or home trailer which you own. Watercraft, their furnishings, equipment or motors are also not covered.

Voluntary Medical Payments

We will pay reasonable medical expenses (surgical, dental, hospital, nursing, ambulance service and funeral expenses) incurred within one year of the date of the accident, if you unintentionally injure another person or if they are accidentally injured on your premises, even though you are not legally liable.

The amount of insurance shown on your Certificate of Property Insurance is the maximum amount we will pay for each person in respect of one accident or occurrence.

Please see your policy for all terms, conditions, limits and exclusions.

Voluntary Property Damage

We will pay for unintentional direct damage you cause to property even though you are not legally liable. You may also use this coverage to reimburse others for direct property damage caused intentionally by an insured person, 12 years of age or under. We will pay whichever is the lower amount of:

  • What it would cost to repair or replace the property with materials of similar quality at the time of loss
  • The amount of insurance shown on your Certificate of Property Insurance

Please see your policy for all terms, conditions, limits and exclusions.

Note: The information above is a summary only and does not include all terms, conditions, limits and exclusions.