Home Insurance: Factors To Consider If You Have A Child With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Many children with autism spectrum disorder do not respond appropriately to danger and may fail to heed warnings to avoid it. While kids with autism often are afraid of harmless objects, they may show a lack of fear in response to dangerous situations. Or, when communication is a problem, an autistic child simply may not understand the reasons for caution. Therefore, it's important to consider certain risk factors when buying home insurance.

Wandering and Home Security

Research indicates that wandering is common among children with autism. Therefore, in addition to locking doors and windows and keeping garage door opener remotes out of reach to keep your child safe, it may be necessary to equip your home with security gates, door alarms, or a home security alarm system.

While security gates and alarm systems require more of an investment, installing battery-operated alarms on your doors is inexpensive. Installing double dead-bolt locks that require a key to open both sides of a door and fencing in your yard are other measures you can take to secure your child's safety.

But besides helping to ensure your child's safety, implementing these and other safety measures also secure your home from outside threats – a step that can save you money on the home insurance premiums you pay.

Dangers of Sensory-Seeking Behaviors

Because many children with autism engage in sensory-seeking behaviors, your child's behaviors are another factor to consider when buying home insurance. For instance, you may need added coverage if your child is under-stimulated and you invest in expensive sensory equipment and/or a sensory room in your home.

Sensory stimulation also is a consideration when purchasing a home insurance policy if your child responds with disruptive or risky behaviors when he or she is over-stimulated. Along with worrying about his or her safety, you have the additional concern about whether damage your child causes to your home will be covered.

Fire is just one example. Standard home insurance policies typically do not cover fires started by a member of the household. It may make no difference that your autistic child does not understand the dangers of fire. Your insurance company still may consider it an intentional act.

It's important to properly supervise your child at all times and secure items, such as matches, lighters, stoves, and fireplaces, that can ignite fires so that he or she can't easily access them. Equip your home with fire extinguishers and make certain that the smoke alarms in your home are always in working order. Like home security features, taking fire prevention measures not only helps to protect your family and home, but may earn you a discount on your home insurance. Contact a business, such as Holt Insurance Services, for more information. 

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