Homeowners Policy: Basic vs Special Form

There are many confusing parts of insurance. One of them is the type of form/policy that you have for your homeowners insurance. There are a few different types of forms, but we will discuss a Basic Form or “Named Perils” versus a Special Form.


The Basic Form is commonly called “Named Perils” because it only covers the perils that are specifically named. If a peril is not named, there is no coverage for the loss. The common named perils are fire, lightening, windstorm, hail, explosion, riot, smoke, vandalism and damage caused by aircraft or vehicle. Some of the common losses NOT covered by a Named Perils form are water damage from a broken or frozen water pipe. Also, damage caused by ice dams, which are formed from the freezing and melting of snow on your roof. These types of losses are very common in Massachusetts. So even though a Basic Form is less expensive, it is rarely recommended.

The most comprehensive coverage will be the Special Form. This type of policy covers almost all losses to the building, with the exception of flood and earthquake damage. The Special Form is used almost exclusively on our homeowners policies. The Special Form pertains to the actual building and not to the personal property and contents of the building. The form can be extended to cover contents for an additional premium. There are a few occasions when a Special Form can not be used; such as, when a property has substandard conditions.

If you have any questions about your homeowners policy and what type of coverage you have, please call us to discuss. We are happy to explain all of your options and give you the best type of coverage for your needs. www.mancuso-nowak.com.