Creating that amazing retreat in your basement may seem like a clever reno until floodwaters rise.
While adding a great man cave is becoming a more common renovation in many homes across the country, what isn’t becoming as popular is the understanding that standard homeowners insurance may turn that beloved space into one of the most costly financial liabilities in a family’s residence.
There are several reasons to explain why coverage may not fully protect this basement room.
According to the 2014 Cost vs. Value Report issued by Remodeling Magazine, the average basement remodel in the United States costs $62,834. It should also be noted that among all natural disasters that occur in the United States, floods are the most damaging. According to statistics from Allstate homeowners insurance, losses average about $48,000. What should be very carefully understood is that should flooding occur – even with flood insurance coverage in place – many of the personal possessions contained within a basement (the most common location for a man cave), will not actually be covered.
This homeowners insurance risk is not exclusive to man caves, but to other expensive basement investments.
Other rooms, beyond the man cave – including workshops full of expensive tools; kitchenettes with their cabinetry, appliances and supplies; guest bedrooms; and even storage rooms – can all find themselves under several feet of water if a local creek should decide to overflow and send its flooding into nearby homes.
For many homes, this will mean that even if a flood insurance policy is in place, coverage for these possessions will come with a maximum; around $20,000 in many cases. In addition to that, coverage for possessions from standard homeowners insurance could add another amount, up to a maximum which is typically around $10,000. Considering the electronics, tools, appliances, furniture, and other belongings that are typically stored in a basement, this may not cover even half of the actual damage.
In fact, the better the man cave and the more improvements that are made to a basement, the greater the financial liability. Before improvements are made to a home, particularly in the basement, it is highly recommended that homeowners insurance customers understand their coverage, make adjustments when necessary, and rethink their reno strategies in order to ensure that they will always be protected in case of disaster.