Oceanside Insurance

Three fine agencies ready to help you insure the Cape Cod lifestyle…
  • Hyannis(800) 924-0052
  • West Dennis(800) 649-2282
  • Wareham(800) 696-1150
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Frequently Asked Questions

Please note the information provided below is intended only as a guideline. The information provided here does not provide coverage nor does it replace any provisions of your policy. Please read your policy and Declarations page for complete information on the coverage you are provided with. If there is any conflict between the policy and the information on this page, the provisions of the policy will prevail.

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Q. A pipe burst and water flowed all over my home. Do I have coverage?

A. Yes, the standard home, condo and renter policies provide coverage for accidental discharge of water from a plumbing system. Damage to your home and personal property is covered. However, any damage to the pipes and plumbing equipment would only be covered if the damage were caused by a peril covered in the policy. For example, if the plumbing system failed and caused the pipe to burst, the damage to the pipes and plumbing system would not be covered since failures are not covered in the standard policy.

Q. Are my house and personal property covered for vandalism?

A. Yes, you have coverage for damage to your house and personal property up to your policy limits provided your house has not been vacant for more than 30 consecutive days immediately before the damage.

Q. During a storm a tree fell and damaged my roof. Do I have coverage?

A. Yes, you are covered for damages to your home. In addition, you have a $500 limit to cover the cost of removing the fallen trees from your premises since the fallen trees damaged a covered structure. The $500 limit is the most you can receive regardless of the number of trees that are removed. The tree removal coverage ($500) is provided if a tree on your property falls due to wind or hail, or the weight of snow, ice or sleet, and damages a covered structure. The tree removal coverage is also provided if your neighbor’s trees fall due to one of the named perils under the personal property (coverage C) section, and damage a covered structure on your property.

Q. I’ve lost everything. Where do I begin?

A. Do you have an inventory of all your personal property? Would you be prepared to submit a claim in the event of a disaster? Now is the time to make a list of your major household items and possessions. It is wise to list the serial number, date and cost of purchase and include the receipt if possible. Alternatively, you can use a video camera or camera to take pictures of your home and its contents. As you video your items you can record the information about them on the tape. Whichever method you choose please be sure to update your inventory periodically and store it in a safe place off the premises like a safe deposit box. This will save you time, aggravation and money in the unfortunate event of a disaster.

Q. Is my property covered against natural disasters like hurricanes and tornadoes?

A. Yes, your property is covered against natural disasters. The exceptions are earthquakes and floods, both of which are not covered in the standard homeowner, condo and renters policies. You may purchase earthquake coverage as part of the homeowner, condo or renter policy, and you can purchase a separate flood policy if appropriate. Please contact your independent agent to discuss flood and earthquake coverage.

Q. Do I have coverage if I lose a piece of jewelry?

A. No, the standard homeowner, condo and renter policies do not cover your personal property for losses due to “mysterious disappearance.” Personal property coverage is provided on a named perils basis, and mysterious disappearance is not one of the named perils. You may purchase this coverage by “scheduling” your valuable items. Please contact your independent agent to discuss scheduling your property.

Q. What does a standard homeowner policy cover?

A. The standard homeowner policy covers two areas: property and liability. The property covered includes your house and attached structures like your garage, your personal property and detached structures like a shed or gazebo located on the premises. Your policy also provides coverage for additional living expenses like hotel expenses if your house is damaged and not habitable. The liability coverage provides protection if you or a member of your household is held liable for injuring someone or damaging someone’s property.

Q. I rent out my basement. Are my tenants covered by my homeowner policy?

A. No. Your personal property and house are covered including the basement. Your personal property within the basement may be subject to a $2,500 limit. However, the personal property of your tenants is not covered. In addition, your tenant’s personal liability is not covered. You may want to require your tenants to purchase a renters policy. Please consult your independent agent if you rent or lease your property to ensure that you have the proper coverage.

Q. What is a coinsurance penalty?

A. Coinsurance is a provision in your policy that states if you fail to carry at least 80% of the replacement cost of the property at the time of a loss you may receive a reduced loss settlement. For example, assume a home valued at $100,000 is insured for $60,000 and a $20,000 loss occurs. This loss would be settled for $15,000 since the insured carried only 75% of the amount of coverage required by the coinsurance clause ($60,000/$80,000 = 75%; 75% * $20,000 = $15,000). If the insured carried the $80,000 required by the coinsurance clause, the loss would be settled for $20,000.

Q. I work out of my home. Does my policy cover business property?

A. Yes, but with limits of coverage. Personal property that is used in any way for business is subject to a $2,500 limit while the property is on the residence premises, and a $250 limit while off the premises. Also, please note that personal liability protection in your homeowner policy does not extend to business liability. Please consult your independent agent to ensure you have proper coverage.

Q. May I cancel my homeowner policy?

A. Yes, you may cancel your policy at any time and a pro-rated amount of paid premium will be returned.

Q. Can my insurance company cancel my policy?

A. Yes, there are legal provisions that allow an insurance company to cancel a homeowner policy. The most common reason for cancellation is for non-payment of premium by the insured. An insurance company must give you ample notice before canceling your policy.

Page last updated on September 13, 2011.

Site Last Updated: September 17, 2019

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