Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Asbestos Removal?

Although asbestos exposure poses a significant health concern, most homeowners insurance policies do not cover asbestos removal. Pollution is typically excluded from homeowner's insurance coverage, which means that reimbursement for removing contaminants, such as asbestos, is likely not included in your policy.

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Last Updated: 8/3/2022
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As most homeowners insurance policies exclude coverage for pollutants, asbestos removal is typically not covered. However, asbestos removal may be covered by a homeowner's insurance policy if it is part of a covered peril.

For instance, your homeowner's insurance may pay the cost of asbestos remediation if asbestos was exposed by snow damage to your roof, a tree falling on your home or vandalism.

Homeowners should verify this information with their insurance company. If asbestos removal is not covered, you should not try to remove it on your own. Hiring a registered asbestos removal professional is the safest method for dealing with this danger.

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Why Doesn’t Homeowners Insurance Cover Asbestos Removal?

Asbestos is typically not covered by homeowners insurance companies because practically all home insurance plans exclude pollution.

Asbestos detection and removal is excessively expensive for both insurance companies and homeowners. Covering asbestos removal would certainly necessitate a significant increase in homeowner insurance premiums.

Asbestos is present in the majority of homes built before the 1980s. It is expensive to clean up since it requires a great deal of specialized equipment and training.

However, asbestos is normally only harmful if it is inhaled, therefore if the asbestos in your home is safely encased within your walls, it is unlikely to pose a health risk.

How to Deal With Asbestos Removal

Self-removal of asbestos may pose significant health concerns. You will need to hire a professional asbestos removal expert. They are familiar with all relevant safety measures and have the necessary equipment and supplies to extract and dispose of the contaminant in a secure manner.

Costs associated with asbestos removal are mostly determined by the type of substance being extracted, the size of the polluted area and disposal expenses. The average asbestos removal cost for homeowners ranges from $1,160 to $3,040, with a national average of $2,080.

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If asbestos-containing materials are not properly labeled, it is hard to identify them. A professional asbestos removal inspector can test questionable items for the presence of asbestos. Due to the risk of discharging asbestos contaminants into the air during sample collection, it is not advised to conduct your own asbestos testing on your own.

However, if you opt not to have the material tested, you should presume that it contains asbestos and take all of the precautionary measures outlined below:

1

Leave the Contaminated Substance Alone

Leave the substance alone if it is not disturbed or expected to be disturbed. Any removal effort raises the likelihood that asbestos will be emitted into the air.

2

Encapsulate the Affected Material

You should properly encapsulate the affected material. Encapsulation is a method for preventing asbestos fibers from getting airborne by covering the surface of asbestos-containing objects. Encapsulation is appropriate if the substance is in good condition and neither soft nor crumbly. It is not advised for materials that have already begun to degrade.

3

Enclose the Asbestos-Containing Material

It is recommended to enclose or cover the asbestos-containing material. Covering entails placing something over or around asbestos-containing components, such as a sleeve over asbestos insulation products or a new floor over asbestos-tiled flooring.

4

Hire a Professional

Homeowners insurance doesn’t cover asbestos removal, but this is not a DIY job. It is better to leave this task to the specialists. Encapsulation and enclosing asbestos-containing materials are both tasks that should be performed by trained and licensed personnel.

Where to Buy Homeowners Insurance

Many reputable insurance firms, such as State Farm and GEICO, offer homeowners insurance. You can also buy homeowners insurance from smaller insurance companies such as Lemonade and Hippo. Homeowners insurance costs around $175 per month on average.

However, costs may differ by the insurance company and how many items you own. MoneyGeek recommends shopping around and comparing home insurance policies.

To estimate how much coverage you'll need, use MoneyGeek’s personal property calculator below.

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About the Author


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Mark Fitzpatrick is a senior content manager with MoneyGeek specializing in insurance. Mark has years of experience analyzing the insurance market and creating original research and content. He graduated from Boston College with a Bachelor of Arts and Johns Hopkins University with a Master of Arts.


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