Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Squirrel Damage?
Squirrels create entry points into your attic by chewing holes from the outside through eaves, soffits, gutters, trim, ridge caps, and other weak points, and have direct access through construction gaps behind your rain gutters or other weak points. These holes and construction flaws could lead to serious water damage to your home.
Squirrels can eat through attic insulation, resulting in higher heating and cooling costs. Squirrels will defecate and urinate in the insulation, causing foul odors and possibly harming your family’s health.
When squirrels begin gnawing on exposed electrical wires in your attic, the situation becomes even more dangerous. Squirrels are responsible for approximately 30,000 house fires per year! If you think you have squirrels in your house, you might wonder if your insurance will cover the repair or cleanup costs.
Will Insurance Companies Pay For Squirrel Damage?
Animal harm can manifest itself in a variety of ways. Large animals, such as deer, have been known to shatter glass doors, while raccoons and squirrels have gained access to homes and wreaked havoc. Homeowner’s insurance sometimes covers wild animal damage. However, depending on how these animals are classified, your policy will most likely only cover some of the damages they cause.
Open windows, chimneys, and faulty construction can all invite wildlife into your home. Unfortunately, even the tiniest animals can cause a lot of harm. Like mice, rats, opossums, and a variety of other small mammals, squirrels are classified as rodents. Most home insurance policies do not cover damage caused by these animals because most companies consider removing rodents and vermin to be a routine part of home maintenance and thus your responsibility. While capable of causing significant damage, Raccoons are not considered rodents, so any damage they cause, as well as damage caused by larger mammals such as bears or deer, will most likely be covered by your policy.
Fences, sheds, and other structures on the property are covered under your policy’s other structures section. A homeowners insurance policy will most likely cover them if a non-excluded wild animal damages them.
It’s important to keep in mind that each insurance policy is unique, and your coverage may differ.
What To Do If Your Home Has Been Damaged By Squirrels?
Unfortunately, long-term infestations and the waste they leave are usually not covered by standard homeowner’s insurance. Every policy has exceptions, so check with your agent to review your policy and ensure that you have the best insurance coverage possible for the area where you live.
Preventing animal problems whenever possible is a good idea. Keep your yard and the area around your house clean and tidy. Remove any tempting nesting areas, don’t leave unattended pet food or standing water out, and keep trash contained properly. If animal damage is discovered and your policy covers it, make sure to file a claim and see what exactly is covered in your policy.
If the repairs are not covered, contact a local pest removal and repair company to help you out. Wildlife removal staff will be able to walk you through the removal and clean-up process.