Why Homeowners Insurance Doesn’t Cover Bed Bugs
Homeowners insurance is financial protection if your home is damaged or destroyed by a condition that’s covered by your policy. In order to be considered a covered loss, the damage must be sudden and accidental and can’t emerge from home maintenance problems like infestations. Here are common home insurance perils that are covered by your policy:
- Lighting Strikes
- Certain Types of Water Damage
Bed bugs, termites, and other pests are excluded from homeowners insurance policies because they are seen as preventable hazards. For instance, bed bug infestations are considered a matter of home upkeep, whereas fire or water damage and lightning strike are not.
When Homeowners Insurance Might Cover Infestations
There are specific circumstances when homeowners might cover pest infestations. Of course, if it was caused by an event that’s covered by your policy. In homeowners insurance, this is referred to as proximate causes. This means if the event is considered the proximate cause of an infestation is covered, then you may be reimbursed for the extermination and other losses. For example, if a pipe bursts in your home and causes water damage that leads to a termite infestation, your home insurance might cover you for the termite damage. Since the termite damage is from the proximate cause, which is a burst pipe, it’s covered by your policy. However, bed bugs aren’t caused by events like water damage, fire, or a damaged roof. They are also not attracted to dirty or unclean areas.
Bed bugs stick to your clothes, and you unknowingly bring them back to your home. If you live in an apartment complex, they can travel through vents from apartment to apartment. The proximate cause is rarely applied to bed bugs, and it would have to be a really unique situation for your insurer to consider covering them.
What to Do if You Have Bed Bugs
If you have bed bugs, don’t panic. Bed bugs don’t carry any disease and aren’t harmful beyond the itching and swelling caused by bites. However, bed bugs can damage furniture, like your bed, couch, and other furniture. Bed bugs are small, and they bite at night while you’re sleeping, so they can be difficult to spot. There are common signs of bed bugs that you should look for:
- Red, clustered bites on your arms or legs
- Specks of blood on your pillowcase or sheets
- Black specks on your mattress and small exoskeletons that have been shed
Pest control can come to your house to assess the infestation and confirm if you have bed bugs or not. If you do have bed bugs, the extermination process typically takes two weeks. Here are a few measures you can take to help minimize your infestation:
- Bed bugs can’t survive in extreme temperatures. You should gather all your washing machine-friendly belongings, wash them, and then dry them in the dryer on high heat. Then seal your washed belongings in vacuum-sealed plastic bags while your home is being treated.
- Vacuum furniture, rugs, and curtains. You should empty the vacuum bag immediately afterward, seal it with tape, and then throw it away.
- Highly infested furniture and belongings may need to be thrown away. However, depending on the size of the infestation, a chemical treatment may exterminate all the bed bugs in your furniture.
Unfortunately, most pest infestations and related damages aren’t covered by homeowners insurance. Since homeowners insurance rarely covers bed bug infestation damage, it is wise to do your best to prevent them.
Rid-A-Bug Pest Control
Unfortunately, most pest infestations and related damages aren’t covered by homeowners insurance. You can keep your home safe from bed bugs and other pest infestations with Rid-A-Bug.
If you already suspect a bed bug infestation, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-682-5901 for an inspection. Our experts use an innovative treatment that will have bed bugs taken care of with no harm or risk to your home or family. Contact us today for more information about our pest services.