As home insurance policies can vary widely, understanding five important components of a policy can help you determine your needs.

1. Dwelling Coverage

This covers the structure of your house as well as any attached structures and fixtures. This could include decks, garages, porches, and more. Be sure to advise your broker of any updates or additions as this could increase the building value and coverage would have to be amended.

2. Additional Structures

This portion of the policy covers detached structures, such as garages, patios, fences and storage sheds.

3. Personal Property and Contents

Personal property and contents include furniture, clothes, appliances, and other movable asserts inside your home. Most policies extend coverage for these items when you temporarily remove them from the premises. As for the types of property covered, be sure to check the coverage limitations of your policy. There could be exclusions or limitations for jewelry, furs, collectibles, and other potentially expensive items. You can purchase specific coverage with a scheduled property endorsement to tailor your policy to your needs.

4. Loss of Use

Should you suffer an insured loss and are unable to occupy your home, your policy will cover the extra expenses incurred, such as hotel, meals, and more, while your home is being rebuilt or repaired.

5. Liability

All policies include liability coverage to cover injury to guests as a result of your negligence. Medical expenses are also included as part of this coverage. It may be wise to have a minimum of $1,000,000 coverage.

Besides these five important types of coverage, you can extend your coverage with a variety of endorsements, such as guaranteed replacement cost for the building and its contents.