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Nationwide News: Small farms could need additional coverage

Is your homeowners insurance policy enough? If you own a small farm or ranch, you could be at risk. The following information is provided by Nationwide, the
No. 1 farm and ranch insurer in the U.S.

Even if your farm is small, if you’re relying on a homeowners policy alone, you may not be adequately covered. How can you tell if you need more than a homeowners policy? Here are a few things to consider.
Barns and farm outbuildings
Most homeowners policies exclude barns and other detached structures “used in whole or in part for business purposes.” Because farming would fall within a homeowners definition of “business,” you’d probably have no property coverage for these buildings.
Farm property
Most homeowners policies place a limit on coverage for property used for business (i.e., farming). If your homeowners policy limit doesn’t cover the value of the equipment you use to farm, this would be a gap in your protection.
Most homeowners policies exclude property coverage for animals. A farm-endorsed homeowners policy allows up to $300 for death to livestock from collision with a motor vehicle. A farmer who needs a higher valuation or needs broad causes of loss would be better served by having a farm insurance policy.
If you own a tractor to mow your lawn, it would be covered by the homeowners policy. However, if you use it for farm purposes or take it off your property, you’d need a farm policy for it to be covered.
Special causes of loss
Under a homeowners policy, farm equipment is covered only in certain situations. There may not be coverage for:
•    Contact with a tree, post, stump or other object
•    Damage from contact with a pothole
•    Upset or overturn
•    Damage from a foreign object
•    Damage during towing and hitching
Protection off your property
Most homeowners policies will not cover a tractor or other farm equipment if it’s taken off your property. There are often exclusions for tractors and other “land conveyances” except when they’re used to service your home.

Nationwide offers CountryChoice for small farms and ranches. CountryChoice is insurance designed specifically to protect your small farm or ranch. It’s a policy that conveniently combines coverage for both your small farm and home.

Farm Bureau membership
Because of Nationwide’s relationship with these nine Farm Bureaus, Farm Bureau members in California, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Vermont and West Virginia may be eligible to receive a discount on Nationwide farm insurance.

For a free insurance review or to design a CountryChoice policy just right for your small farm or ranch, talk to your farm insurance agent, or contact the county Farm Bureau office to find a nearby agent.