Is Water Damage Covered By Insurance In Portland

You may have discovered a months-old leak after noticing some peeling paint in your house and are now wondering if you can obtain adequate coverage for the water damage repairs. Or, perhaps, sewage backed up and made a huge mess on your first floor, leaving you with the same question: is water damage covered by insurance?

This article will quickly teach you about water damage insurance, the most prevalent sources of water damage, which types of water damage are covered by insurance and which are not, and how to file an insurance claim for the best chance of success.

Let’s get started!

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In a Hurry? Here Are Key Points:

  1. Water damage may or may not be covered by your homeowners insurance in Portland, OR. It all depends on the cause. If the water damage was accidental and resulted from a building failure then yes, you should receive coverage. 
  2. Water damage that happened as a result of negligence and inconsistent maintenance will most likely not be covered.
  3. Flood damage necessitates separate flood insurance policy.

Water Damage Insurance - How Does It Work?

Water damage insurance refers to standard protection you get from your homeowners insurance policies. It’s specifically for sudden and accidental water damage which came from an indoor cause – busted pipes, roofing leaks, and others.

It will NOT cover water damage that happened due to a lack of maintenance. Also, only the water damage restoration costs will be covered, not the repair costs of the actual cause. For more clarification, keep on reading.

Water Damage Insurance Statistics

  • The average home insurance claim for water damage is $11,098.
  • 98% of basements experience some sort of water damage.
  • 14.6 million U.S. homes are at risk of flooding.
  • On any given day, home water damage emergencies effect 14,000 people.
  • Nationwide, household water damage costs up to $20 billion annually.


Common Causes of Water Damage - Are They Covered?

Plumbing Failures

When they fail, pipes can result in heavy damage. Pipe bursts can flood entire rooms and make your property temporarily uninhabitable. 

Homeowners insurance will cover water damage restoration costs from sudden and accidental pipe bursts. The main point is that you’re not solely responsible for the leak and that an outside force played a role as well. For example, your pipe may have froze and then busted. 

However, that can’t be said for gradual damage caused by a leak that has been ignored or just never been found due to a lack of checkups and maintenance. In this case, you bear all responsibility and therefore likely won’t get coverage for restoration. 

Note that you may not get coverage for the actual pipe replacement, but will for the damage that that pipe caused by leaking.

Appliance Failures

What about, let’s say, washing machine leaks?

Same thing! If the damage was sudden and accidental, you should get coverage. If you were just lazy and ignored obvious signs that some maintenance is required – or you didn’t check enough to find the less-obvious – then you most likely won’t. 

As long as the damage came from the inside of your property and was accidental, you will be covered, regardless of whether the perpetrator was a washing machine, dishwasher, refrigerator, or water heater.

Sewage Backups

Sewage backups aren’t typically included in a homeowners insurance policy. This is unfortunate because in many cases, you might not at all be responsible for your sewage backup. 

For example, one of the most common causes of sewage backups is – or are – tree roots which penetrate through the pipe and cause the wastewater to be pushed back to your property. And, obviously, this is totally out of your control. 

However, many insurance companies offer an option to add coverage for sewage cleanups to your typical policy. So, to sewage-proof yourself from now on, you can consider purchasing this addon.

Roofing Leaks

Water damage from roofing leaks that were caused by a covered peril – strong winds and storms, faulty installation or accidental cracks – will be covered. Now, again, insurance will pay for the water removal and restoration costs, not for the roof repair itself. 


Flood damage is not covered by your standard policies. You need to get a separate policy for that – a flood insurance policy. You purchase this policy through the National Flood Insurance Program managed by FEMA

How to File a Water Damage Insurance Claim

Now that you know whether or not your water damage is covered, here are some pointers on how to make a successful claim.

Naturally, you should contact your agent right away to file a claim. This should be done immediately once you’ve determined what caused your water damage and whether or not that cause is covered by insurance. In addition, contact a water damage restoration company, such as Precise Water Damage Restoration of Portland, to assist you with the cleanup and repairs.

And here comes the critical part: record EVERYTHING. Amass as much evidence as you can. Make several in-depth videos that describe what happened. Give your insurance provider no room for speculation. 

All surfaces and damaged objects should be photographed. Your restoration crew will also take images, but you must be the primary initiator. If you are unable to access a damaged room or rooms due to safety concerns, notify the restoration crew.

You will find the documentation useful in any upcoming meetings and negotiations. Ideally, your restoration company will assist you in navigating the entire procedure and take care of a significant amount of work with the insurance company.


Need help with water damage? Call the Precise Water Damage Restoration of Portland team today! Our expert partners will help you deal with all types of water damage and repair and restore your property in the fastest time possible. 

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