What Is An Insurance Peril?

May 6, 2020, 3:06 PM

What insurance protects against and what you can do for your home.

You might know them as natural disasters, but in the insurance business, situations that can seriously damage a house or other property are called “perils.” Not all of them are natural disasters, but each one can cause a lot of damage. There are many different types, but there are 16 that the industry calls out specifically in most policies, including Hastings Mutual’s Homeowners policies

Accidental discharge of water or steam
Falling objects
Fire or lightning 
Riot or civil commotion 
Sudden and accidental damage from electrical current
Sudden and accidental tearing apart of a heating system or appliance
Vandalism or malicious mischief 
Volcanic Eruption
Weight of ice, snow, or sleet
Windstorm or hail 

If there’s a question on whether something is covered, our team will research the situation and make a determination based on the policy language and the details of what happened.  

Insurance perils, lightning strike

Our Homeowners policy rating algorithm is by-peril, meaning that the cost of your policy depends on the chance your property has to be affected by each peril. Every policy is different and your independent insurance agent can help answer your questions and create a policy that meets your needs.

Your Hastings Mutual policy is there to help you get back to normal when something goes wrong. But we’re there for you before disaster strikes, too. Let’s look at windstorms, something we’ve been insuring against since our first days in 1885. 

A windstorm is any powerful wind, up to and including tornadoes and hurricanes. Tornadoes are more common in our six-state coverage area in the spring and summer, but windstorms can strike anywhere and at any time. Wind can knock down trees and shatter windows. It can lift up outdoor furniture and topple small structures like sheds.

Here’s what you can do to reduce the impact of a severe windstorm on your property

  • Put movable grills, chairs, and other items in a shed or garage when they’re not in use. If they’re built in, make sure they’re anchored in place. 
  • Every so often, take a look at the shingles on your roof and the siding on your exterior walls. Damaged or missing shingles are a weak spot for your house, an easy way for wind and the rain or hail that accompanies it to get in. 
  • Don’t forget to investigate your trees and fences — a broken limb or loose fence post can be hurled like a spear through a door or window. They may not be as obvious of a danger as something like a table or chair, but a strong windstorm can destroy them or move them around just as easily.
  • If the power goes out, it may be days or even weeks before electricity is restored. A generator can keep you up and operating throughout that time.

The Mutual Understanding blog and Hastings Mutual videos are made available for educational purposes only. The information referred to is not an official company statement, corporate policy, or offer of coverage. Refer to your insurance policy for specific coverage. There is no representation as to the accuracy or completeness of any information found by following any link on this site. Please contact your local independent insurance agent with further questions and for more details on any insurance policy-related information you read here.


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