Suburban Raccoons

Is Damage from Raccoons Covered by Insurance

December 21st, 2011 ernie Posted in Insurance Coverage 1 Comment »

Is Damage from Raccoons Covered by InsuranceThe answer is probably “No”, for most people. I do know that for my own insurance company, they would not pay for damages done to our home by raccoons getting into our attic.  We had them in for about 2 months and they damaged the soffit as well as it cost me $600 to have someone come over and install heavy gauge wire mesh over all of the openings to ensure that they could not get back in. This company also installed a trap door so they could get out of our attic but not back in. Once they were out of the attic, they removed the trap door and covered the opening with the wire mesh so they could not get back in. Fortunately they did not do the damage shown here in this picture. You can just imagine what the inside of the attic looks like.

Home Insurance – Damage from Raccoons

The home insurance we have is pretty good. We have had other claims for water damage and they were excellent, however for damage done by raccoons and the cost to block them from doing more damage is not covered and they do not provide any kind of coverage where wild animals are involved. I was a little upset, but it least it was only $600 to have the repairs completed and the wire mesh installed. I spoke to one of the supervisors from my insurance company and they point to a specific clause which had been there all of the time, which I had not seen or read. Sure enough it was there and they do not cover damages done by raccoons or other wild animals such as squirrels etc.

Check your Insurance Coverage for Damages done by Raccoons

So check your own insurance coverage for your home to see if damage by raccoons is excluded or not. Either way you must get them out of your attic and you must stop them from coming back. Even if the den is vacant another family of raccoons will just move in. So killing the raccoons or trapping them and taking them far away just does not work. It also might be illegal in your city or town as well, depending on the bylaws. It is illegal in our city. Do not procrastinate, the damage they do will just get worse.

Why Use Heavy Gauge Wire Mesh

You cannot prevent all the raccoons in your area from trying to get into your home. There are a lot of them almost everywhere and once they can smell a den, they can tell if it is occupied or vacant and they know it is home, even though it is your home. Killing them one by one or trapping them one by one will be a never ending job. There are more of them than you can trap and they will come back year after year.

Using the wire mesh will prevent them from actually getting into your home. They will try. We have seen tracks in the snow on our roof since we installed this heavy gauge wire mesh, but they cannot get in to our attic any more! Unfortunately, most insurance companies will not cover this solution or the damage that the raccoons cause, so you need to make sure they cannot get back into your home to limit the damage they can do.

Please refer to some of our other posts to read more about the process of using and installing wire mesh. If you do it at the wrong time you risk more damage and a lot more frustration, which again the damage from the raccoons is not covered by your insurance company. For example if the young pups are left inside the adults will literally take your roof apart trying to rescue their young. You may have to wait until they are old enough to travel before installing this one way trap door.

Comments are welcome!

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Insurance Coverage for Damage from Raccoons

December 7th, 2011 ernie Posted in Insurance Coverage 1 Comment »

It is one thing to find out that you have raccoons in your attic or somewhere else in your home, but then you find out that the damage they caused is not covered by your home  insurance, at least not in our case! We really were furious that we had this problem of raccoons in our attic to start with and focused on getting them out and blocking them from ever getting back in. But once we had a solution and were making repairs, we found out that our home insurance coverage does not cover damages caused by raccoons. There was this small paragraph that was part of the fine print which denied any coverage for damage caused by rodents and specifically raccoons.

Now maybe we do not have home insurance from the right company, but if you are reading this and you have a raccoon problem do not assume that you are covered by your home insurance. Call your insurance company right away and find out if you are covered or not. Better to know as soon as possible rather than after all of the work is done and you have a large bill to pay. Ours would not cover the damage or even the repairs that would keep them out on a permanent basis. We did the right job of getting rid of them as you will read later in this post.

What did it Cost to Keep Them Out

In our case it was not too bad. The cost for someone to come and install heavy duty wire mesh across all potential openings into our attic was $600. Could have been worse. It took him a couple of hours and he came back one more time, which I will explain a little bit later. So for two trips at $300 a trip, and we have not had any problems since. He also repaired the entrance for us which was under the eave of one of the roofs of our home. I guess it is worth it. However now knowing what he did, I could have easily done the work myself and the cost would have been maybe $25 in materials. So if you are handy at all and not afraid of getting on the roof, here is what you do.

What is the Solution to Keep the Raccoons out?

First of all you block all possible entrances with strong gauge chicken wire, screw nailed into the roof and sealed so water cannot get in.  There is no way raccoons and squirrels will get past this.

This is important. If the raccoons have babies in your attic, you are going to have to wait until they are mobile and coming out of the den on their own. If you do not they will either die in their, stink up your house etc or the parent raccoons will tear your roof apart to get back into the den to their young. Wait until they are old enough to travel on their own.

Once they are old enough to travel, install your wire mesh with a one way trap door that only opens out, so they can get out but not back in! This is the second trip that I spoke of earlier. Once you are sure they are out of your attic , then you can remove the trap door and install the heavy gauge wire mesh across the opening so that they can never get in again.

You can try to have your insurance coverage for your home pay for the damage the raccoons caused, however there will be probably fine print that says this kind of damage is not covered, so you are on your own. If you are successful at getting them to cover the damage and repairs, let our readers know which insurance company you are with.

Read some of our other posts about dealing with raccoon scat and droppings as well as cleaning up your attic after raccoons have been in to build a den.



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