Forest Fires and Home Insurance
Sally Hazel, LendingMax
As many of you know, my office is located in the Capri Insurance Head Office in Kelowna, so issues surrounding insurance tend to be quite top of mind. With the full onset of our 5th Okanagan “Fire Season”; I thought it prudent to share some information and tips with regard to Home Insurance and how it is or can be impacted by Wildfires.
Here is what my guru (Terry) shared with me this morning:
- For those purchasing a home, you need to ensure you are including a subject pertaining to being able to secure home insurance on the new property, in the offer to purchase. It is also best to arrange the insurance at your earliest possible opportunity, keeping in mind those insurance providers are unable to 'bind' a new policy more than 30 days prior to completion.
- Using an Insurance Broker (like Capri) can ensure that you have access to multiple insurance companies, products, and markets whereby some may limit coverage within a 25km radius of a fire that is deemed 'out of control', and others will extend that to 50km. Some providers may take other factors into consideration such as a large body of water like Okanagan Lake, being in between the fire and the home needing insurance.
- For those that have been evacuated or are concerned about that possibility - your home insurance likely includes ALE (Additional Living Expenses) coverage for people displaced from their homes. This can cover things like accommodation, meals, etc. It is advised to retain all receipts for these types of items if you are affected in this way.
- Finally - Wildfire does not only impact home insurance coverage, but can also affect Auto Insurance. Owners are unable to add things like 'fire and theft' if you have been evacuated or are in a fire evacuation alert area.
Please feel free to call or email me with any specific questions or concerns you may have. I'll be
happy to help you out and or redirect you to the appropriate department.
Oh ...and I should add a disclaimer here - I am definitely NOT an insurance expert - just wanted to
get some of these items top of mind so that those that may be affected know to ask a few more
questions of their Insurance provider(s).
Have a great day!
Sally Hazel, Mortgage Broker
Cell: (250) 870-7060 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org