Ask a lot of homeowners in southwest Virginia about an attractive way to add charm to a home and one popular answer you’ll hear is to install a wood stove. Not only do wood stoves provide supplemental heat in the winter, but the natural smell of burning wood is tough to beat. And depending on your budget, some wood stoves add a unique aesthetic touch to any room.
But did you know that a wood stove can affect your homeowners insurance?
In fact, one of the biggest concerns with a wood stove is eligibility issues. Some insurance carriers won’t issue a policy with a wood stove, and most carriers add a small charge to your premium for having one.
And it doesn’t matter if the wood stove is used—just the presence of a flue is enough.
So what do you need to know about a wood stove and your insurance policy? Here are some items to consider:
- Wood stoves must be disclosed on an insurance application or if installed later it’s your responsibility to notify your insurance carrier.
- Check with your insurance carrier about wood stove requirements. These vary from company to company, but usually include requirements such as professional installation, annually cleaned/safety check, and signed company specific questionnaire.
- The location of your wood stove matters. For example, having a wood stove in a garage or detached structure is unacceptable by many carriers. Always ask about outdoor wood stoves.
- Most insurance companies will not allow a wood stove to be the main heat source. A thermostatically controlled heating system is generally required
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