Two hands holding a small gray house

Homeowner’s insurance is meant to offer you financial protection if your home or some of the things in it are damaged or destroyed. But even the standard policies have a couple quirks, and not everyone takes the time to read the fine print. Here are three things you may not have realized you had coverage for.

1. Spoiled food. Normally, when a storm knocks out your power and melts all your ice cream, your first reaction is to hit the grocery store, not call your insurance company. So it might surprise you to learn that, generally, insurance plans cover up to $500 worth of ruined food. What’s more, in most cases, a deductible doesn’t apply.

2. Slander and libel. You can sleep easy knowing that the lawsuits for all those highly incendiary (but also totally true, of course) things you wrote about your first selectman or that company downtown are probably covered by your homeowner’s insurance. Another bonus? Most policies also cover dog bite claims, though this may depend on the breed of your dog.

3. Your college student’s property. Even if your son or daughter goes to school on the other side of the country, your homeowner’s insurance probably covers a stolen laptop or a trashed dorm room. It makes sense when you think about it–their property is still technically yours. The exception? Students who rent off-campus. In that case, only renter’s insurance provides the right coverage.

Of course, the surprises can go both ways. Quite a few things most people assume are covered under their homeowner’s insurance policy actually aren’t. For instance:

1. Flooding. Many people wrongly assume that just because their policy covers water damage from plumbing gone rogue and rain, they cover, well, actual floods. That isn’t the case. If you live along the coastline, or in an area that’s prone to flash floods, then you’d be better served by flood insurance.

2. Stolen valuables. If you have rare collections or anything drastically above typical value, like antiques or jewelry, then you should think twice before trusting your homeowner’s insurance policy. Standard coverage for these kind of items doesn’t usually exceed $1,000.

3. Sewer backup. If you’re connected to an older sewer line, then you may be at a greater risk for problems not covered by your insurance. And sewer backup isn’t just gross-sounding–it can cause damage to floors, walls, electrical systems, and even furniture.

Of course, standard homeowner policies can differ from state to state, and even insurance company to insurance company. If you have questions about what you’re specifically covered for, it’s best to check your policy.