The typical homeowner's insurance policy covers the house, garage, and other structures on the property, as well as personal possessions inside the house such as furniture, appliances and clothing, against a wide variety of perils including windstorms, fire and theft. The extent of the perils covered depends on the type of policy. An all-risk or open perils policy offers the broadest coverage. This covers all perils except those specifically excluded in the policy. Homeowners insurance also covers additional living expenses. Known as Loss of Use, this provision in the policy reimburses the policyholder for the extra cost of living elsewhere while the house is being restored after a disaster. The liability portion of the policy covers the homeowner for accidental injuries caused to third parties and/or their property, such as a guest slipping and falling down improperly maintained stairs. Coverage for flood and earthquake damage is excluded and must be purchased separately.
For coastal homeowners with property located in the "wind pool" (within 1000 feet of tidal water), homeowners policies may exclude windstorm coverage. Separate windstorm coverage can be purchased through some state-run programs (e.g. the Citizens program in Florida) or through excess & surplus lines markets. These policies generally include a separate hurricane deductible – often a percentage of the wind limit for the home – which is triggered by a windstorm loss resulting from a storm system declared to be a hurricane by the National Hurricane Center. Typically, the hurricane deductible is only paid by the policyholder once during a hurricane season. Homeowners may also qualify for discounts on the hurricane windstorm portion of insurance premiums for having protective measures in place, such as hurricane shutters, hurricane glass, roof to wall connections, roof deck fastenings, etc. (subject to windstorm mitigation inspection by qualified inspector).