Are you confident you have the right insurance to protect you from life's little — and big — emergencies? You might be surprised. Take this quiz and find out where you stand.
1. A flash flood swept through my living room, ruining my carpet and damaging an antique wooden trunk filled with family photographs. My homeowners insurance will pay for all the damages.
FICTION: Your homeowners policy does not include flood coverage. In general, only policies issued through the National Flood Insurance Program provide homeowners coverage for damages from flooding.
2. My 18-year-old son wrecked his 1996 Chevrolet Cavalier. Fortunately, his auto liability insurance will pay for his car repairs.
FICTION: Generally, auto liability policies provide coverage only to third-party vehicles — those operated by other drivers — in an accident. Your son would need collision insurance to pay for the damages to his car.
3. My 1920s home has old plumbing fixtures that have corroded. My homeowners policy will pay to replace them.
FICTION: Homeowners policies cover most major perils (like fires and windstorms), but don't include damages that consist of normal wear and tear, deterioration, or mechanical breakdowns of major appliances. You can purchase a home warranty plan for those types of problems.
4. I live in South Florida where a hurricane hit my beach house. I realize that because hurricane coverage is provided by a separate policy through the state wind pool, most hurricane-related damage isn't covered by my homeowners policy. But my homeowners insurance will pay for food spoilage.
FACT: In areas with state-sponsored wind pool programs, your homeowners policy may exclude coverage for windstorm and hail damage. In most cases, your homeowners policy will pay for perishable items that spoil due to power loss or mechanical failure. And don't forget, flood insurance requires a separate policy
5. If I have liability, comprehensive, and collision insurance on my car, I don'?t need to buy extra insurance when I rent a car on vacation. My own insurance will cover the rental.
FACT: In most cases, this is true. But there are some exceptions, depending on your policy and the coverage rules that apply in your state. However, one thing that is consistent is that most policies do not cover car rental outside the United States.
6. My homeowners policy will cover me if I accidentally spill bleach on my antique oriental rug.
FICTION: Personal property under the homeowners policy is only covered for certain types of losses specifically listed in the policy. Broader coverage can be provided by the Valuable Personal Property policy, formerly called the Personal Articles Floater, which provides coverage for many other types of loss.
7. If my apartment goes up in flames, my landlord's insurance will not cover my belongings.
FACT: In most cases, your landlord's insurance covers the building — not the personal possessions you have inside of it. To cover your belongings, you'll need a renters insurance policy, which covers theft or damage from fire, flood, and other specified perils. Whether damage or loss is covered depends on the actual event and the terms of your insurance policy.
USAA Financial Planning Services
USAA is a diversified insurance and financial services organization that has served the military community since 1922. USAA Financial Planning Services ? refers to financial planning services and financial advice provided by USAA Financial Planning Services Insurance Agency, Inc. (known as USAA Financial Insurance Agency in California), a registered investment adviser and insurance agency, and its wholly owned subsidiary.
USAA means United Services Automobile Association and its affiliates.