Blog Will Insurance Cover Rodent Damage In My Home?

Feb 23, 2023

Can insurance help cover extermination or damage caused by rodents?

mouse looking out hole

Rodents can cause extensive damage to your home. On average, the cost of repairs can cost upwards of $500 to $1,000 – can insurance help cover rodent damage? Or are you better to pay out-of-pocket for this unexpected expense?

Not only can they cause expensive repairs, but they can also carry diseases and cause structural damage to your property or house.

Learn if insurance will help you with a rodent damage claim, how to prevent critters from entering your home, and how to identify the signs of an infestation.

Does insurance cover rodent damage?

If you are concerned about rodent or mouse damage in your home, you may be wondering if home insurance will cover the costs related to repairs. Damage from rodents and vermin is generally excluded from your policy because it is a preventable issue.

Insurance is created to protect your property from accidental and unexpected damages – an infestation is often a problem that could be prevented by proper maintenance. Rodent related problems don’t simply happen overnight, they are seen as “wear and tear” issues.

There are specific circumstances where your insurer may pay for issues caused by rodents. For example:

A mouse chews through the electric wiring in your home, and it results in a fire. The company may cover the fire damage to your property since it was caused by an accidental electric issue.

Will insurance pay for rodent removal from my home?

Similar to damage related to rodents in your home, your insurance provider will likely not cover the costs associated with an exterminator or removal of rodents from your home. If you fail to address prevention and initial signs of rodent-related damages, companies will see this as neglect and will likely not approve your claim.

Should I file an insurance claim for rodent damage?

The cost of removing vermin may not even be worth spending your insurance deductible, which can lead to higher premiums.

Always consider your insurance deductible before you choose to file a claim for rodent or pest damage. Depending on your deductible amount, it may not make sense for you.

For example, let's say you have a $1,000 deductible and your policy includes pest damage. You notice mice damage and get a quote for repairs. It will cost $1,200 to fix. You have two options:

  • File the claim : You will have to pay your $1,000 deductible and the insurance will cover the remaining $200. You could also see your rates increase when you renew because you now have a claim on your record.
  • You cover the damages : You are only paying an extra $200 out of pocket. There is no claim and your insurance record will remain unchanged.

Always read your policy and check for exclusions. If you have any questions talk to a ThinkInsure broker today.

Why do I have rodents in my house?

Rodents find their way into homes because they are seeking food, warmth, and water. This is especially common in fall, as temperatures cool and food sources become limited. Rodents enter homes through holes, cracks, open doors, roofing tiles, and siding.

Raccoon outside near tree

How do I prevent damage from rodents?

Rodents are a common menace for homeowners, but you can prevent them from moving into your home in several ways.

  • Store food properly : Take time to properly store food in airtight containers so it’s harder for rodents to sniff out.
  • Check your basement and attic : Periodically check your attic and basement for any droppings. Rodents tend to visit places in your home that experience less foot traffic.
  • Seal holes and crevices : As part of your fall home maintenance, check for any openings in your windows, floorboards, windows, and exterior – be sure to seal the holes ASAP before rodents find a warm home for the winter.
  • Unclutter your home : Rodents prefer clutter because it protects them – it is also harder to find any signs of infestations if your home is cluttered.
  • Repellents and traps : Natural repellents and no-kill traps can help prevent issues.
  • Keep the perimeter of your property clear : Avoid storing wood or garbage bins right up against your home as this provides a safe place to hide. Avoid dense gardens if possible too.

If you suspect an infestation, always contact a pest control professional. They will be able to find the source of any damages and safety remove any pests from your home.

What are the most common household rodents and pests in Ontario?

Even with home insurance in Ontario, you can’t completely protect your home from potential rodent issues. Here are some of the most common rodents to be mindful of in the province :

  • Skunks
  • Raccoons
  • Mice
  • Voles
  • Possums
  • Rats
  • Squirrels
  • Groundhogs

How to identify signs of pests in your home

Rodents are a serious issue for homeowners that should not be ignored. It’s important to know how to identify signs of rodents and pests in your home so you can take action to remove them. If you notice any of these signs, be sure to address them as soon as possible :

  • Nests
  • Scratching noises
  • Musty odours
  • Tracks
  • Bite, gnawing, or nibble markings
  • Excrement

Common damage from pests and rodents

Did you know rodent teeth are stronger than copper, iron, and aluminum? This allowed them to chew through metal, PVC pipes, rock, aluminum, cinder blocks, wood, and other household materials. Here are some of the most common areas of damage from rodents and pests :

  • Electrical : Wiring can ‘get in the way’ of the rodent’s path, leading to them chewing it up. They may also be drawn to the heat of electrical. This can lead to electric fires and other safety issues.
  • Structural : Sliding, wood, and metal are no match for rodents. This is why looking for signs of chewing outside your home is important – it could signal rodents getting inside. Once inside, they may gnaw through insulation, walls, and floors.
  • Living spaces : Rodents can contaminate your home and cause illnesses.
  • Food : Rodents will search for food and water inside your home. They can wreak havoc in pantries and contaminate everything. They will chew through the plastic to get into the food if they really want to. The outside of containers can also become contaminated with diseases from urine, saliva, and feces.

Rodent damage and insurance FAQs

If your property has experienced damage from a raccoon, home insurance will likely not have it as a covered peril because the damage is likely preventable. To confirm what is excluded and included in your policy, contact ThinkInsure today.

Yes, rodents pose risks to your family because of the diseases they carry and the risk of structural damage to your home. Some diseases rodents carry include, hantavirus, salmonellosis, and rat-bite fever. If you see any signs of infestation, be sure to contact a professional to assist with removal.

If you have comprehensive car insurance, your vehicle will likely be covered for any damages caused by rodents, such as frayed wires from chewing. Everyone’s policy is different so be sure to read the fine print!

Prevention is step one to limit rodent damage

Prevention is the best bet to limit the chance of rodent damage in your home. Since the majority of insurers know the issue can be prevented, they will not cover extermination or damages. If you have any questions related to your policy, here’s why you should choose ThinkInsure.