Can You Insure A Barn?

Oct 14, 2020 | Business Insurance

Barns are the art and architecture of the countryside. Every person can admire the beauty of a well-kept barn. It can also be considered experience and as part of our culture. When economically speaking, it is impractical to keep old barns but they let you understand where we are now. This understanding helps us move forward.

Your farm is more than just your business. It is where your whole life runs now if you own a farm as a way of living. You can, of course, insure your barn to protect against physical damages such as fire, lightning, windstorm, hail, smoke, theft, vandalism, explosion, riot or civil commotion, aircraft, sinkhole collapse, volcanic action, etc. This is an important aspect of your farm property insurance policy. Other than farms, your ranch structures, and other farm buildings should also be insured and must also be listed on your policy that they are covered.

Aside from the physical damages we listed, these are also some that can be covered for the barn insurance:

  • Weight of ice, snow or sleet
  • Cosmetic damage buyback – covers cosmetic damage caused by hail; actual hail damage that penetrates the surface is covered without this additional coverage
  • Automatic adjustments of limits – inflation protection coverage
  • Ordinance or law for farm barns, buildings, and structures
  • Earthquakes

Barn coverage includes protection for:

  • Equipment in the service of farm buildings like water pumps, motors, and outdoor equipment
  • Furniture, fixtures, machinery, and equipment used for the operation of the building that is located in, on or within 100 feet of the structure

What Is Farm Outbuilding Insurance?

Your farm policy can include farm outbuilding coverage that protects damage against the buildings and other structures of your farm and ranch and also barns and horse stables. This is other than your dwelling coverage included in your policy. The dwelling coverage is for the coverage for your home. Your other outbuildings can be insured if they are listed on your farm and ranch insurance policy.

Outbuilding, Barn and Stable Insurance Cost

The price of outbuilding coverage differs for every farmer or rancher since it depends on the things you own in your property:

  • The amount of coverage you need
  • The number of buildings you’ll need to be covered
  • The current condition of your buildings

Be sure to talk to your agent about the following:

  • Insuring your barns or other buildings for replacement cost or actual cash value.
  • The causes of loss, be it basic, broad, or special you want to insure for.
  • How much deductible to carry. A higher deductible may lower your premium but you would have to pay more in case there is a loss.

In some instances, insurance companies may provide coverage for collapsed structures. You should check your policy that explains the conditions and causes of the loss for what things would be covered once there is a collapse.

We also suggest talking to your insurance agent when you add a new barn or other building to your property. Some insurance companies provide coverage of $100,000 for new construction for 60 days beginning with the delivery of materials that will be used in the building of your new farm.

Some insurance companies also offer coverage for equipment breakdown and mechanical failure of systems built into barns or other farm structures. Some of these are milking parlors, bulk tanks, and other equipment that are attached to a dairy barn. These would be covered for mechanical breakdown. Make sure that your insurance agent knows all the values of the fixtures, systems, and equipment that you are using for your barns.

More information in insuring barns

Insuring barns is a difficult process with different industry standards and a variety of approaches. Insuring them is based on their purpose. In case the barn has historic value, it does not mean that it can still be insured, especially if it’s no longer used for its original purpose. It is still possible. However, traditional barns cannot be insured for the original value.

Insuring barns are based on cash value, utility value, or replacement cost value. Cash value marks the expected useful life and also notes the depreciated value over time. For utility value, it is based on how the barn is used. One great example is a barn used as a chicken coop before that now is used as a storage for tractors. You will be given the value of the storage for the tractors not the chicken coop anymore. Replacement cost value or to replace with a new barn involves strict guidelines and can only be applied to barns less than 20 years. Documents are needed to prove the age of your barn. Other insurance companies will base your insurance on measurement. Factors included in this formula are location, use, the current market value for a rebuilt, clean-up costs, etc.

The players in getting a barn insurance

Make sure that you are an informed owner. Also, take the time to find the right agent to work with. Look around for recommendations and learn about other people’s insurance coverage. You have to also know what is included and what is not in your insurance policy so that you won’t have trouble once there’s already damage to your barns. The resulting policy is a negotiated contract which is an agreement of all parties involved. This is equal to a promise to pay if something bad happens.

Barns are different

Furthermore, insuring barns is different from insuring your own homes. Insuring your own houses means they get the value of the building and the personal property within. They need the details of construction and industry standards to determine materials, construction, finishing, and functions like bathrooms, kitchens, bedrooms, etc.

What is the basis for refusing to insure a barn?

In addition, insurance companies can refuse to insure your barn if they are not properly kept and cleaned. They are particular with the cleanliness of your properties such as barns.

Ask us questions

Now, you have information about insuring your barns. Please do not hesitate to ask us questions if you need clarification with your policy or if you would like a free insurance audit of your existing policy. Please do call us today at +1 (877) 658-2472 and we will assist you with your needs.