If you are a Florida homeowner, you may be wondering if your homeowner’s insurance policy covers vandalism damage to your property. Vandalism is the intentional and malicious destruction or defacement of someone else’s property, such as breaking windows, spray-painting graffiti, slashing tires, etc. Vandalism can cause significant financial losses and emotional distress for homeowners.
Will my homeowner’s insurance pay for vandalism damage?
Likely, yes. The good news is that most standard homeowner’s insurance policies in Florida do cover vandalism damage to your home and personal belongings, subject to your policy limits and deductibles.
However, there are some exceptions and exclusions that you should be aware of before filing a claim.
One exception is if your home is vacant or unoccupied for more than 30 days. In that case, your policy may not cover vandalism damage, or it may only cover a reduced amount. This is because vacant homes are more vulnerable to vandalism and other perils, such as theft, fire or water damage.
If you plan to leave your home unoccupied for an extended period of time, call your insurance company. You may need a vacant home insurance policy or an endorsement to your existing policy that extends your coverage for vandalism.
Another exception is if the vandalism is committed by someone who lives in your home or has permission to be on your property. For example, if your teenage son or daughter damages your home or belongings out of anger or rebellion, your policy may not cover.
Similarly, if you rent out a room or a portion of your home to a tenant who vandalizes your property, your policy may not cover the damage. In these situations, you may have to seek compensation from the person who caused the damage or their parents.
Some exclusions that may apply to vandalism damage are damage caused by war, civil unrest or government action, including damage caused by nuclear hazards or radioactive contamination. Most policies also exclude damage caused by wear and tear, deterioration or neglect, including damage caused by animals, insects or rodents. And, most Florida insurance policies do not cover damage caused by mold, fungus or bacteria.
Vandalism can be a stressful and frustrating experience for any homeowner. However, by having a comprehensive homeowner’s insurance policy in Florida and following the proper steps to file a claim, you can recover from the loss and restore your property to its original condition. Though, you may still have to sue your insurance company, if they do not pay.