This post is my second in a series where I address common FAQs about Homeowner’s Insurance. After the many changes insurance companies have implemented to home insurance recently, this leaves many consumers confused and very unsure of what exactly they are covered for. This series is aimed at addressing the important parts of your home insurance policy and what kind of questions you should be asking your agent.
What happens if my neighbor’s tree falls on my yard?
Surprisingly, I get this question a lot and I understand why. This is a very confusing situation for homeowners, and is often handled the wrong way. Most homeowners don’t even realize this is most likely covered by your homeowner’s insurance policy.
So what do you do in this situation? Who is responsible?
If a tree falls in your yard, regardless of who’s it is, you are responsible for the cost of removing the tree and remedying any damage it caused. Luckily most homeowner’s insurance policies cover you in this situation and will help cover your costs, after your deductible.
The same holds in reverse as well. If a tree on your property falls on your neighbor’s yard, your neighbor would be responsible and should file a claim with their insurance company.
But my neighbor’s tree is dead!
Most likely your neighbor will not be held liable for damages unless you can prove he or she knew the tree was a hazard and failed to remedy it accordingly. If your neighbor’s tree is dead and it appears that it could fall at anytime, I advise my clients to write a polite letter expressing your concerns about the tree. If the neighbor fails to take action, write a second letter with a copy of the first letter attached. These letters could be used as evidence should you need to take your neighbor to small claims court seeking payment for damage done by the neighbor’s tree.
Contact me today for a free evaluation of your current insurance policy and make sure you have the right coverage!