Are You Covered For Vandalism Under Your Home Insurance Policy?
Whether it is graffiti, broken windows, cut-down trees, destroyed lawns and gardens, or a house pummeled with eggs, vandalism comes in many forms. Vandalism, or the intentional damage to an insured property by a third party, can be quite concerning for any homeowner as the costs associated with repairing the damage can be quite significant. Luckily, most home insurance policies include coverage for vandalism, however, you should be aware that there are exceptions for vandalism coverage. In this blog we’ll discuss vandalism and your home insurance policy along with the type of insurance coverage available for the damage done to your home. Additionally, we will give you examples of when your home insurance policy wouldn’t cover vandalism damage.
Vandalism is defined as the intentional destruction of an insured property by a third party. Vandalism damage comes in many forms, and this can include the following:
Egging a house.
Spray painting someone’s property in order to deface it.
Removing, bending, or destroying signage on someone's property.
Will A Standard Home Insurance Policy Cover Vandalism?
Yes, a standard home insurance policy will almost always provide coverage to the homeowner for vandalism and other malicious acts of mischief. A comprehensive or an ‘All Risks” home insurance policy will always include vandalism coverage. Other basic named perils policies will typically include vandalism coverage, so if your home is the target of vandalism, you will most likely be able to file a claim to cover the necessary repairs.
If you are still unsure whether your home is covered for vandalism under your specific home insurance policy, always talk to your insurance broker so that you can have peace of mind knowing that you are covered for any malicious acts of mischief, including vandalism.
Exceptions For Vandalism Coverage
Unfortunately, there are instances where your standard home insurance policy won’t cover you for vandalism. If this is the case, you may need to modify your insurance policy with other optional coverage add-ons, known as endorsements. The following are just a few examples when a standard home insurance policy wouldn’t cover you for vandalism:
If You Run A Business Out Of Your Home
If this is the case, your standard home insurance policy may not guarantee you full coverage for vandalism since businesses require business property endorsement to be properly covered for vandalism.
If The Perpetrators Of Vandalism Are Covered Under The Home Insurance Policy
As mentioned in the above, vandalism is the intentional damage done to an insured property by a third party. Family members that are covered under your standard home insurance policy are not considered third party members. So if they cause damage to your home, it is not considered vandalism by the insurance company.
If Your Home Is Left Vacant And Unoccupied For Over 60 Days
Unfortunately, home insurance won’t cover your house if it has been unoccupied and vacant for 60 days or more prior to the act of vandalism. This is because insurers view unoccupied homes as high-risk targets for vandalism and theft. If you are in this situation, consider adding an endorsement to your home insurance policy or think about getting a separate vacant insurance policy so that your home is protected when you’re away.
If You Own A Condominium
Not many people are aware of the fact that condo owners are responsible for their own unit within the building, and this includes getting condo insurance. In the case that your unit is vandalized, you will be offered coverage for vandalism just like a homeowner would under a comprehensive home insurance policy.
If You Are A Renter
If you rent an apartment, you don’t have to worry about being covered for vandalism done to the building since your landlord’s insurance will cover these damages. However, it is a good idea to get tenant insurance so that, if necessary, you can make a claim and offset some of the costs associated with replacing your damaged or stolen possessions due to vandalism.
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