What You Should Know About Renovations

Renovations aren’t just a fun thing to watch on TV. They can improve curb appeal, spruce up where there’s been wear and tear and (most importantly) get your place to look the way you like it. Whether your renovation plans are big or small, there are a few things you should consider before getting started.

What Do I Need To Know Before I Begin?

Did you know renovating your home can have an impact on your insurance? It’s a detail that sometimes gets overlooked in the hustle and bustle of making changes. Using some trusted tips from the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC), we have compiled a quick checklist of things to keep in mind before you get your reno started.

Contact us before getting started to let us know about repairs, upgrades and changes to your home, as they may affect your coverage.

Notifying TD Insurance before you begin allows us to help with tips during your renovation, and ensure your coverage reflects these exciting enhancements to your home. Your coverage may be limited in these situations, so this is an opportunity to get clarity on what is and is not covered during this work.

  • Take a look at your policy documents. Reviewing your policy details can provide clarity on coverage changes or limitations that may arise as a result of minor or major renovations. Of course, a TD Insurance Advisor is also available to answer questions you may have.
  • Expect a potential change in your home’s replacement value. (Replacement value is the amount that would have to be paid to replace an asset based on its current worth.) Changes to your home can ultimately affect the overall value of the residence and, in turn, change the replacement value in your coverage.
  • Your home may be considered “unoccupied” when renovations are ongoing. (Not to be confused with “vacant”, where a property has been left with no intent to return.) Your occupancy status can have an impact on your coverage while a reno is in progress. We recommend contacting a TD Advisor to ensure your policy reflects your needs if you’re away for an extended period of time.
  • Use a trusted contractor. Having people working in your home can come with its own set of liabilities. Do your research to make sure you have a reliable contractor that comes with references, qualifications and proof of insurance so you’re not held responsible if there’s an injury on-site. TD Insurance does not cover faulty workmanship, so doing your research ahead of time can save a lot of frustration down the line.
  • Keep those records and receipts. Your paper trail is a great resource for having all the necessary details about costs and project dates. It’s also an opportunity to lay out all the details you may have agreed upon with another party. This eliminates the guesswork and lets you have every bit of information available when you need it.
  • Prep that permit. Even if you’re leaving the upgrades to someone else, it’s still considered your responsibility to have the necessary permits in place. A contractor can do this for you, but you should have this expectation included in the contract details so it is clear that it is their responsibility.
  • Know that do-it-yourself projects can have as much of an impact on your insurance as work done by contractors. So be sure to follow the above steps whether you’re bringing in a team to upgrade a kitchen or just doing some DIY rewiring to your basement.

Are There Any Insurance Benefits To Renovations?

Renovating your home can benefit your insurance in ways that you may not have considered.

Repairing potentially hazardous areas is a great way to reduce your risk for liability if someone were to injure themselves on your property. For example, repairs and general maintenance that make your driveway safer can help limit the chances of someone slipping or falling and taking you to court for damages or injuries.

Owners of older homes often find themselves paying higher premiums because of the aging structure. Your upgrades could help reduce those premiums. In addition, changes like a roof repair can be an excellent line of defense against common hazards that might affect your insurance.

Renovations can sometimes be a tricky process, but we’re here to help you understand how changes to your home can impact your insurance.

Get in touch with a TD Insurance Advisor to inform us of any renovations you plan to get started, and you can call us for answers to any questions you might have. Reach us at 1-866-361-2311, Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.