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HO-1: basic form homeowners insurance

When purchasing home insurance, you may notice specific terms within the policy. For example, HO-1 is a type of homeowner's insurance. This term describes the most likely types of perils, or losses, the policy will cover. When selecting home insurance, you'll want to read through the policy to ensure you know what to expect and what limitations exist.

What does HO-1 cover?

HO-1 home insurance is one of the most basic forms. If you need to file a claim, this type of policy is most likely to cover the following types of losses:

  • Smoke and fire damage
  • Explosions
  • Hail damage and windstorm damage
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Damage from vehicles striking the home
  • Civil commotion or riot damage
  • Volcanic eruption coverage
  • Lightning damage

Like all other forms of home insurance, this policy will have some limitations. Another component of the policy will list the types of damage that are not covered. These exclusions are important to know because they can limit the amount of financial protection you have for specific needs.

It is also important to know that HO-1 home insurance generally does not provide any financial coverage for damage related to flooding or earthquakes. Some property owners should purchase policies that include these risks, but it will not be covered automatically with an HO-1 policy.

Coverage for your property

Some types of HO-1 home insurance will offer coverage for your home's contents, or your personal belongings. However, there are limitations here. For example, some policies will require you to list the specific items you wish to cover in your home to insure them. Not mentioning them could mean you get no protection if those items are lost, such as in a fire.

Covering liability

Another key exclusion of HO-1 is liability insurance. Most homeowners need to maintain home insurance with liability coverage. It protects when someone falls on your property or when your dog bites someone (as well as many other risks). This is one key limitation of this type of homeowner's insurance that owners need to think about before buying.

Is this the right insurance for you?

It is not likely that you will find a lot of home insurance providers offering HO-1 insurance policies. Other policies that offer more coverage tend to be a better fit for most property owners. Those policies tend to be both affordable and more comprehensive. If you have a mortgage on your home, your lender is likely to restrict access to this type of policy for lack of enough financial protection That may mean you need another form of coverage anyway.

If you are unsure what type of home insurance is right for you, be sure to ask your insurance agent about the varied options available to you. They can explain them to you as well.