Dock Exclusions Under Homeowners Policies

Dock Exclusions Under Homeowners Policies

Sailing or boating is a popular pastime for homeowners who live near the coast or have a property that backs up to a lake. Most boat owners moor their vessels at a private dock attached to their property, and there is a reasonable expectation that a homeowners liability policy would cover any damages. However, there are several reasons why purchasing a dock insurance policy can help cover the loss when damage occurs to the dock.

Flood Coverage

Living near a water source exposes your property to the threat of heavy flooding under adverse weather conditions. Although you may already carry a flood insurance policy, these typically exclude the following items from coverage:

Bridges
Docks
Bulkheads
Seawalls
Piers
Wharves

As such, your expenses to repair the structure would be an out-of-pocket expense.

Exclusions and Limitations

If you have a homeowners policy that includes additional structures, you might have a limited amount of liability coverage on your dock. However, the wording in these policies excludes damage created by flooding, surface water, tides, waves, tides, tidal water, storm surge, and overflow of a body of water. This includes damaged created from wind-driven rain. Damages in these situations would not be covered. A policy specifically written as dock insurance will offer more comprehensive coverage.
A quality dock policy will address issues of fire and lightning damage, and some instances of liability. Check with your local agent for the specifics listed in your policy and options for how you can increase your coverage.