Policy form Generally known as Used for Characterized by


    Basic Form             

Camps, homes with  no interior plumbing, no central heat, etc.

"Basic Perils": limited coverage (fire and lightning, with vandalism at an additional cost). Rarely used.


   Broad Form   

Similar to HO-1, on camps, unimproved older homes

Named Perils on Dwelling and Contents; not commonly used.


   Special Form

Most commonly purchased home insurance, generally the minimum required by lenders for new home purchase

"Open Perils" on Dwelling (the house); "Named Perils" on Contents (your stuff):   Many additional coverages may be added by endorsement (such as "replacement cost" treatment, personal injury, and others).


 Tenants policy

Tenants, apartment renters

No coverage for building (that's the landlord's responsibility), just Contents and Liability protection.


Special Form

Newer, preferred homes, offered selectively by a few companies. Great if it's available

"Open Perils" on Dwelling; "Open Perils" on Contents,   replacement cost coverage, higher limits on jewelry, silverware, etc., plus broader liability protection.


Condo policy

Condominium owners

Coverage on personal property as with HO-4, but also can include coverage for building (e.g. interior walls, build-outs), and other condo owners' needs.

A typical homeowners policy (HO-3 & HO-5) has the following coverage structure included automatically: (this illustration assumes a house that would cost $200,000 to rebuild new)

Coverage Insures your: General description Example (on $200,000 home policy)

Coverage A

Dwelling / House

This is the limit of insurance on the actual dwelling. 


Coverage B

Other Structures

For sheds, barns, detached garages, in-ground swimming pools, etc.

$20,000 (usually 10% of the Coverage A amount)

Coverage C

Personal Property

Property not part of the structure: e.g. furniture, clothes, appliances, etc

$100,000 (usually 50%, occasionally 70% of Coverage A amount)

Coverage D

Loss of Use

For your living expenses over and above your normal living expenses if your home is made uninhabitable (by insured loss such as a fire).

$40,000 (usually 20% of Coverage A amount)

Coverage E

Personal Liability

If you get sued, bodily injury & property damage; non-auto related.

$500,000 common, but limits of $100,000, $300,000 and $1,000,000 also available

Coverage F

Medical Payments

Payable to injured guest without regard to your liability or negligence.

$1,000 common, but higher limits ($2,000 - $5,000 ) also available