Does Home Insurance Cover Fences and Sheds?

Your home is more than just a house. Numerous structures might dot the property—storage sheds, fences, sidewalks, retaining walls. They represent just as much of your property investment as the house itself does, and you naturally don’t want anything to happen to them. That’s why you want your homeowners insurance to cover these items to its greatest extent.

Let’s take a closer look at how your homeowners insurance is designed to offer you protection beyond the coverage it already provides for your primary dwelling.

What's Covered Under Home Insurance?

Homeowners insurance is designed to help you repair or rebuild your property following unexpected or unavoidable hazards like hail, high winds, falling trees or fires. These events could strike any of the buildings on your property, be it your house, a gazebo or fencing. In all cases, you will want adequate assistance to help cover the costs of rebuilding.

Your homeowners insurance will include dwelling insurance to cover the cost of rebuilding your home itself. However, you will need the additional coverage offered by detached structures insurance to cover storage sheds and other construction. This coverage is usually included with most standard home insurance policies. However, it is separate from your dwelling coverage.

Therefore, if a severe storm causes damage to your home’s roof, and a tree falls on your storage shed, then your homeowners insurance will usually pay for both losses. However, it will do so out of two separate types of coverage. Each will include separate terms and conditions on how much they will pay you for your loss.

Usually, both your dwelling insurance and other structures coverage will pay you based on your home’s replacement cost value. This is an amount of money necessary to rebuild the house itself following a total loss. The limitation on other structures coverage, however, is that it will only pay up to a certain percentage of your dwelling coverage limit.

So, supposed that you have $150,000 worth of dwelling insurance in your homeowners policy. Your other structures coverage is likely only to be 10% of that limit, or $15,000. Therefore, if a massive event, like a tornado, damages storage sheds, detached carports, fencing and other construction on the property, then you will be compensated up to $15,000 for your cumulative loss (and not up to $15,000 for each loss).

However, if you feel that you need more coverage that the available benefits, then there are endorsements that can help you increase your other structures coverage. Reading through your policy can take some time. However, it’s critical that you understand it fully. Your agent can also answer your questions on cost and coverage.