A home is the costliest asset owned by most Canadians. People spend a significant part of their savings and life’s earnings on buying and furnishing their beloved homes. However, many homeowners don’t realize the importance of protecting their home against natural and man-made disasters. While some disasters might be covered under your policy, many others might require you to pay for the damages from your pocket.

Why It Matters
Natural and man-made disasters are unavoidable in most cases. The changing weather patterns in Canada and global climate change are leading to many dangerous catastrophes. If your home is not insured against such calamities, you will find yourself in major financial trouble as you lose the most precious asset of your life. Canada has seen a number of weather events like lightning, hail, thunderstorms, floods, violent winds, and tornados that can have an effect on anyone. Also, negligent or deliberate human actions can lead to some man-made disasters causing a lot of damage to your property.

History of Disasters
Alberta has an intimate history with both, natural and man-made disasters. The Northern Alberta Wildfire was the costliest natural disaster in Canadian history wherein policyholders received claims of about $3.58 billion. In 2013, the floods lead to claims of nearly $1.7 billion. Due to these calamities, many insurance companies might raise the premium rates when you choose to cover your home against disasters. The price increase leads many homeowners to skip this much-required coverage. However, as per the insurance data, the average claim is $81,000 in case of natural or man-made disasters and if you don’t have this kind of money lying around, you will be stuck with no finances to repair your homes.

Things to Remember
Many homeowners believe that natural disasters aren’t covered by their policy but this is a myth. A lot of insurance companies include a coverage against unpredictable weather events. For instance, if a hailstorm damages your lawn furniture or your home siding or a tornado happens to tear off your roof, it will be generally covered by your home insurance. Lightning also might be covered by most auto and home insurance policies, without any additional deductibles.

In case your home has some additional features like above-ground pools or outdoor spas, you will need an additional coverage known as an endorsement. Also, some events like an earthquake must be covered as an extra clause in the policy. As per a recent study, only 22 percent Canadians opt for earthquake coverage and only 35 percent choose sewer backup coverage.

Predictable or Unpredictable?
Until now, many homeowners didn’t consider a cover against floods as flooding was predictable in certain areas. The flood-risk areas are also listed by provincial governments. However, as the weather is getting more and more unpredictable, it is best to get a complete cover against all kinds of natural and man-made disasters.

Taking Your Chances
It is a gamble whether or not you’d be affected because of any such events, but if your luck runs out, you probably won’t be able to take the financial setback. Having an adequate insurance cover is the best way to assure your peace of mind.

When you’re buying or renewing your policy, it is best to speak to your insurer to understand what is covered in your home insurance plan. Asking a few questions and understanding the requirements of the right cover as per your home’s structure and location will save you a lot of trouble down the road.