What could be better than cuddling by the fire on a cold winter day? How about adding a steaming cup of hot chocolate or mulled wine?
Traditional fireplaces, outdoor fire pits and wood stoves are some of the most popular ways to enjoy the flickering flames. However, it’s important to keep in mind that all types of fireplaces can have an impact on your home insurance. In this article, we’ll talk about how having a wood stoves may affect your insurance coverage. Keep reading to learn more.
Are wood stoves covered by home insurance?
When you purchase a home insurance policy, your insurance broker will ask you many questions. How big is your house? Where is it? How is it heated? You will also likely be asked if you have a fireplace of any sort, including a wood stove. Don’t worry, there is insurance coverage available, but this is one feature that may cost a little extra.
Why would a wood stove cause my insurance to increase?
Any open flame comes with an increased risk of fire and other hazards, like carbon monoxide poisoning. When the risk of a claim increases, you usually pay more for insurance. The exact price will vary, but your insurance broker will help find the right coverage, at a fair price.
Your insurance company often requires your woodstove or fireplace to be inspected by a certified Wood Energy Technology Transfer (WETT) professional, prior to offering coverage.
WETT-certified professionals inspect wood-burning appliances for many reasons, including:
- An insurance company requested an inspection
- A pre-purchase home inspection
- A system performance issue
- Visible signs of damage
It’s important to disclose the presence of fireplaces or wood stoves to your broker, as failure to do so could result in a claim being denied.
What’s the difference between a wood stove and pellet stove?
They look similar, but pellet and wood stoves are not the same. Here are the key differences:
||Burns wood pellets made of sawdust or woodchips.
|Doesn’t need a power source.
||Powered by electricity.
|The flames from a wood stove can give off sparks which could increase the risk of damage to your home.
||The flames are completely contained which means there’s a smaller risk of damage.
|Wood stoves require more maintenance. You need to an annual inspection and clean out soot and debris regularly.
||A pellet stove requires minimal maintenance.
Just like a wood stove, you must tell your insurance broker if you have a pellet stove installed in your home.
Insure your home with BrokerLink
Whether you have a wood stove, a traditional fireplace, an outdoor fire pit, or a pellet stove, you want to protect your home with the right insurance coverage. BrokerLink’s insurance advisors will take the time to get to know you and understand your unique needs, so they can create a plan that’s right for you.
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FAQs about insurance for homes with wood stoves
What is not covered by homeowners insurance?
Every home insurance policy is unique. Discuss with your broker to determine what is and isn’t covered under your policy. Generally speaking, things including regular wear and tear and vacant properties are not covered under home insurance. They also won’t cover any damage done purposefully or if they discover fraud.
What is a WETT?
Wood Energy Technology Transfer Inc. (WETT Inc.) is a non-profit training and education association managed by a volunteer Board of Directors elected by holders of valid WETT certificates. Through its administrative designate, WETT Inc. functions as the national registrar of the WETT program. Through professional training and public education, WETT Inc. promotes the safe and effective use of wood-burning systems in Canada.
How do I get a WETT certificate for my wood stove?
This is a frequently asked question, according to WETT Inc. There is no such thing as a ‘WETT certificate’. What is issued is an inspection report by a professional who is WETT certified.
There are no legal requirements in Canada for a person to be WETT certified in order to perform inspections. However, many insurance companies insist that the inspection and/or installation and/or maintenance of wood-burning appliances and equipment be performed by someone who is WETT certified – so, better to be safe than sorry. For more information, visit wettinc.ca.
Is wood stove insurance mandatory?
There is no ‘wood stove’ insurance policy. Coverage will be included as part of your home insurance policy at an additional cost. Talk to your home insurance broker if you have a wood stove to make sure you have the proper coverage in place.