Will homeowners insurance cover mold damage and restoration?

Black mold, technically called toxy stachybotrys, can cause significant health problems, from dizziness and nausea to hallucinations, anxiety, depression, and personality changes–which is why addressing mold problems in your home is a serious concern. Of course, most black mold isn’t toxic and doesn’t cause side effects. But no matter what kind of mold you’re trying to remove from your home, you could be facing tens of thousands of dollars in remediation costs.

Will homeowner’s insurance cover mold remediation and restoration?

Most standard homeowner’s insurance policies don’t cover mold remediation. Not, that is, unless it’s linked to a peril specifically covered by your policy. For instance, if a pipe leak that is covered by your home insurance results in mold damage in the ceiling and wall beneath, that mold damage would likely be covered.

Your policy is most likely to be denied if the claim is based solely on the mold itself, not linked to a contributing factor. Claims are also more likely to be rejected if your home is exposed to heavy humidity on a consistent basis or if a leak or other issue has been neglected for some time.

Finding out for sure whether your damages are covered

Because every homeowner’s policy is different, your first step is to document your mold problem–take pictures and try to tell how extensive the damage is–and then contact your insurance agent. They’ll be able to go over your policy with you, answer your questions, and help file a claim.

If you’re concerned about mold damage in the future, you may be able to switch to a home insurance policy that’s sure to cover the damage; in this case, contact a local independent agent to talk about your coverage options.