What are the 8 Types of Homeowners Insurance?

Homeowners insurance comes in various "standardized" forms. Regardless of the insurance carrier here are the 8 popular homeowners forms and what they cover.

HO-1 - Basic Form

The basic homeowners policy is considered the base policy form. This form will usually financially protect you from 10 named perils:

  • Fire or Smoke
  • Lightning
  • Explosions
  • Hail and Windstorms
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Damage from Vehicles
  • Damage from Aircraft
  • Riots and Civil Commotion
  • Volcanic Eruption

HO-2 - Broad Form

A broad form policy covers all the perils in an HO-1 policy, plus:

  • Falling Objects
  • Weight of Ice, Snow, or Sleet
  • Freezing of Household Systems
  • Sudden and Accidental tearing apart, cracking, burning, or bulging of Pipes and other Household Systems.
  • Accidental discharge or overflow of water or steam.
  • Sudden and accidental damage from artifically generated electric current (Not lightning)

The HO-2 typically covers not only your homes structure, but your belongings and sometimes even your personal liability as well. It is important to note, that because the HO-2 is a 'named peril' policy, any damage caused by events other than those listed on your policy will generally be excluded from coverage.

HO-3 - Special Form

A Special form policy covers all the perils in an HO-2 policy, however, an HO-3 doesn't limit coverage only to named perils, it often can provide more financial protection than an HO-2. That means that your typical HO-3 form can financially protect you against any and all perils unless your policy specifically mentions them in the exclusions; and if it does not - you are still covered.

HO-4 - Renters Form or Tenants Form

This policy type is specifically for renters since it covers only belongings and personal liability and not the building structure. Your landlord buys insurance for the structure. Belongings are typically covered against the same perils as an HO-2 broad form homeowners insurance policy.

An HO-4 policy will also usually cover additional living expenses should you need to stay elsewhere temporarily while your apartment is getting repaired after a loss.

HO-5 - Comprehensive Form

A comprehensive form policy is comprehensive in that it often covers more perils than other types of policies. Just like a HO-3 form a HO-5 is an open-peril policy form that safeguards against all perils unless your policy specifically excludes them in writing.

The following are typically excluded from coverage under a HO-5 policy:

  • Earth Movement (Earthquake, Landslide, Mudslide, or Sinkhole)
  • Floods
  • Water Damage
  • Damage from Infestation
  • Neglect, Deterioration, and General Wear and Tear
  • Settling, Sinking, Bulging, or Expanding of the houses foundation.
  • Pets or other animals
  • Mold, Fungus, or Rot
  • Intentional Loss
  • War, Goverment Action, and Nuclear Hazard
  • Ordinance or Law
  • Smog, Rust, and Corrosion

When it comes to your personal belongings an HO-5 typically covers more perils than an average HO-3 policy. In addition, your personal liability is covered up to the limits you choose. Even though an HO-5 policy is typically more expensive than a HO-3 (and may not be offered by as many insurers), it is the broadest type of homeowners insurance coverage you can get.

HO-6 - Condo Form

This type of policy is designed specifically for condo owners and financially protects belongings and personal liability. An HO-6 policy is much like Renters Insurance but also typically extends to cover the walls, floors, and ceiling of the unit too.

The same incidents covered under a typical homeowners insurance policy generally apply to HO-6 coverage. The rest of the condos structure is usually covered by a policy purchased by the homeowners association.

HO-7 - Mobilehome Form

The mobile home form is bascially the same as an HO-3 but is designed specifically for mobile or manufactured homes.

HO-8 - Older Homes Form

A HO-8 policy is designed to address specific concerns with coverage for older homes. The coverage details of a HO-8 are basically the same as a HO-3 but with special adaptations to better suit older homes. Historic homes, registered landmarks, and vacant homes often carry this type of policy.


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