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Homeowners’ Insurance May Cover the Cost of Tree Removal

Homeowners’ insurance safeguards people’s houses from any destruction caused by covered circumstances, also known as insurance risks. Such risks include fire, storm, theft, and vandalism. It can be a huge hassle if a tree falls and wrecks your house or items or obstructs your premises. Fortunately, in certain instances, the homeowner’s insurance will pay for any loss caused by the fallen tree and even its removal.

Does Home Insurance Cover the Cost of Tree Removal?

Homeowners insurance does cover tree removals, with some exceptions. Generally, if a tree falls on your dwelling because of a peril listed in your policy, it will be covered. But homeowners insurance won’t cover removal if a tree falls but lands in your yard. Additionally, damage caused by unlisted bed events in your policy, like earthquakes and floods, will not be covered by homeowners insurance.

When is Insurance Responsible for the cost of Taking Down a Tree?

Suppose a tree falls on your house, outbuilding, or other property due to a peril covered by a typical homeowners insurance policy. In that case, the insurer will pay for your residence’s repairs and remove the tree. The following are samples of the types of risks covered by a standard homeowner’s insurance plan:

  • Windstorm or hail
  • Explosion
  • Fire or lightning
  • Smoke
  • Vandalism
  • Riots
  • Aircraft
  • Theft
  • Vehicles
  • Freezing
  • Volcanic eruption
  • Weight of snow, ice, or sleet
  • Falling objects
  • Unexpected, unplanned ripping, breaking, combustion, or protrusion
  • Unintended release or outflow of liquid or steam
  • Unexpected or unforeseen destruction resulting from an electrical current going through an unintended pathway.

If a storm or other catastrophe results in a tree falling and harming your yard, homeowners insurance will pay up to a certain sum for the destruction. The Insurance Information Institute (III) reports that this kind of damage usually accounts for 5% of the insurance on the residence. Most insurance companies will also set a limit for any single tree, shrub, or plant. It is best to consult with your agent to determine the restrictions of your policy which can vary between carriers.

When Does Homeowner’s Insurance Not Cover Tree Removal?

Whether homeowners insurance covers storm damage is based on the specific situation. If the homeowner’s carelessness causes the tree damage, the insurance will not pay for removing the tree. An example is when the tree is deteriorating, aging, or should have been taken away as part of necessary upkeep. Additionally, if a tree falls into an open area, such as the lawn, due to a covered event, the insurance will not pay for tree removal. 

On the other hand, according to the Insurance Information Institute website, a few insurance companies may provide money to eliminate the fallen tree if it obstructs a driveway or a handicapped accessible ramp.

Suppose a tree falls on your property due to an earthquake, flood, landslide, or mudslide. In that case, you will need separate insurance coverage, as these events are not included in the typical homeowners’ policy.

How much home insurance coverage am I entitled to for eliminating a tree?

The price of cutting down a tree runs from $320 to $811, with an average of $700, according to HomeGuide. When you make an insurance claim, the amount you are reimbursed is listed in your policy minus the expense of your deductible. If the cost of tree removal is lower than your deductible, you should consider paying on your own and not filing a claim, as this could cause your premiums to go up considerably.

If a tree falls and causes damage to your home or personal belongings, your insurance policy will provide coverage for the costs up to the limits of your coverage.

How to submit a claim for tree removal on a homeowners insurance policy?

Submitting a request to remove a tree does not have to be complicated. It is essential to make your homeowner’s insurance aware as soon as possible because if you do not, your claim may not be accepted. The following steps should be taken when presenting a homeowner’s insurance claim:

  1. Reach out to your insurance company as soon as possible to start a claim. They can provide you with a selection of contractors and guide you on how to stop any more damage from occurring by doing it yourself.
  2. Snap photos of the destruction before throwing things away and tidying up.
  3. Be aware of contractors who aim to overcharge and those who knock on your door to scam you. Request contractors’ licenses and insurance details to prevent being taken advantage of.
  4. Avoid the risk of additional harm to your property.
  5. If you are not confident about the safety of the action or you don’t feel comfortable doing it, you should not proceed. Homeowners insurance has terms that prevent any further damage. Try to make a provisional remedy instead of a permanent one so that the insurance provider can arrange for expert assistance to make a permanent solution.
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