Don’t declare your basement flooded, instead state the cause.
This article is in no way meant to replace a conversation with your insurance agent, but based on our research, we have found some information that may clear the confusion of whether or not a flooded basement is an insurance claim.
Contact Your Insurance Agent to be Sure.
If you experience flooding in your basement, it’s gross, unsanitary, upsetting, and can pose a serious health risk to your family, but it may or may not be covered by your homeowners’ policy depending on the cause of the flooding.
Sump Pump Failure: If your basement floods due to sump pump failure, unless you specifically have a “Sump Pump” endorsement (rider) on your policy… you may want to check.
Plumbing Leak: This is likely covered, but again, check with your agent. If plumbing leaked from a toilet, shower, a burst pipe under the floorboards, or from a sink, it’s likely a covered event.
Appliance Leak: Hot water tank (make sure you have maintenance records), air conditioning unit, fridge, or washing machine leak is probably covered.
Ground Water Seepage: Whether it was due to heavy rains and poor grading so water came in through windows, or saturated soil and water is seeping in through cracks in foundation and basement walls, this is likely NOT covered. This may need to be handled via a Public Adjuster because your homeowners’ policy will probably deny this claim.
Sewage: If sewage seeps in due to a line breaking outside your home, this is probably not covered by your homeowners’ policy. The municipality would likely be responsible. If sewage is leaking from your own toilet you may not be covered unless you have a Sewage Endorsement on your policy.
Regardless of the cause, if you experience flooding in your basement, call David right away. The most important thing is to restore your property to pre-flood conditions as quickly as possible. Rapid response helps prevent further (more expensive) damage and protects against severe health issues from mold growth and bacterial contamination.