When is a home deemed uninhabitable by insurance companies?

"I know my home insurance will cover temporary living expenses if my house becomes uninhabitable for some reason. But what I want to know is, how do insurance companies decide whether a home can or can't be occupied?


Shannon Martin · Updated on
Reviewed by Shannon Martin, Licensed Insurance Agent.
“Good question! The simple definition of uninhabitable is “unfit to live in.” This usually refers to health or safety issues, or a lack of necessities or utilities such as electricity, heat, running water, and sanitary facilities. If a house is structurally damaged, it is usually considered to be uninhabitable as well due to the safety issues involved.
You would need the living expense if, for example, a damaged roof could collapse at any moment or a kitchen was no longer safe to use after a fire.
On the other hand, if there was damage to a bedroom and you have a three-bedroom house, then the insurance adjuster would say that it is safe to stay and that the home is still liveable. “
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Jerry partners with more than 50 insurance companies, but our content is independently researched, written, and fact-checked by our team of editors and agents. We aren’t paid for reviews or other content.

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