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What does Fire Insurance Cover?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 24 September 2016
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Fire insurance is a type of property insurance that helps to offset the losses sustained when a fire partially or completely destroys a home. The coverage may be provided as part of the broader homeowner's insurance policy, or in some countries may be purchased as a supplementary form of insurance that provides benefits for any portion of the damage not covered in the homeowner policy. Along with replacement and reimbursement of lost belongings, fire insurance can also provide financial assistance in finding a new place to live and compensating the insured party for losses not covered under a homeowner insurance plan.

One of the major benefits of fire insurance in general is coverage of belongings that are destroyed in a fire. This includes major appliances within the home, furnishings, clothing, and other items of value that are specifically covered within the terms of the policy. Separate fire insurance may be secured to provide additional coverage that is not found as part of the homeowner policy, allowing the insured party to enjoy a broader range of coverage and benefits in the event that a fire should take place. Typically, the insured party must submit an itemized claim that identifies the items lost in the fire and, along with an estimate of the cost of replacing those items.

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In addition to compensating the insured party for the cost of items lost in a fire, fire insurance also often covers expenses that come about as the result of the fire. This includes benefits that aid in finding and paying for alternative lodgings after the unfortunate event. Should the insured party need to stay in a motel or other form of temporary lodging while the fire damage is repaired, the fire insurance may include provisions that pay for those lodgings, up to a certain period of time. Along with helping to offset the cost of temporary living arrangements, the provisions of the policy will also often pay for the cleanup effort at the site of the fire, helping to expedite the repairs and allow the homeowner to eventually resume living in the home once again.

While fire insurance in general covers most incidents that lead to a fire in the home, there are a few situations in which the coverage would be invalidated. One common example is the deliberate act of setting the property on fire in order to collect on the insurance. In that scenario, the insurance company would likely reject the claim and cancel the coverage. In addition, charges of fraud would probably be filed, resulting in criminal actions against the homeowner.

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