Yes, your homeowner’s insurance will likely cover broken windows, but only if the damage was caused by a covered peril. This means that the event that caused the broken window must be listed in your policy as something that is covered.
Understanding Homeowners Insurance Coverage
There are two types of homeowners insurance policies: named-peril and open-peril.
- Named-peril policies only cover damage caused by specific perils that are listed in your policy. Some common covered perils include fire, theft, vandalism, lightning, and windstorms.
- Open-peril policies cover all risks except those excluded. This means that your policy will cover broken windows unless the damage was caused by an excluded peril, such as wear and tear, faulty installation, or lack of maintenance.
Covered Perils for Broken Windows
Here are some of the most common covered perils that can lead to broken windows:
- Vandalism: If someone breaks your window intentionally, your homeowner’s insurance will cover the cost of repair or replacement.
- Windstorms: If a strong wind blows a tree branch or other object into your window, your homeowner’s insurance will cover the damage.
- Hail: If hail damages your windows, your homeowner’s insurance will cover the cost of repair or replacement.
- Fire: If a fire damages your windows, your homeowner’s insurance will cover the cost of repair or replacement.
Exclusions for Window Damage
Here are some of the most common exclusions for window damage:
- Wear and tear: Your homeowner’s insurance will not cover damage to your windows that is caused by normal wear and tear.
- Faulty installation: If your windows are damaged because they were installed incorrectly, your homeowner’s insurance will not cover the cost of repair or replacement.
- Lack of maintenance: If your windows are damaged because you did not properly maintain them, your homeowner’s insurance will not cover the cost of repair or replacement.
- Intentional damage: If you or someone else intentionally damages your windows, your homeowner’s insurance will not cover the cost of repair or replacement.
Options for Covering Window Damage
If your homeowner’s insurance does not cover broken windows, you have a few other options for getting the damage repaired or replaced:
- Home warranty coverage: Some home warranties cover the cost of repairing or replacing broken windows. However, home warranties typically have more exclusions than homeowners insurance policies.
- Liability coverage for damaged windows: If someone else is responsible for breaking your windows, their liability insurance may cover the cost of repair or replacement.
- Supplemental coverage for windows: You can purchase supplemental coverage for your windows that will cover damage that is not covered by your homeowner’s insurance policy.
How to File a Claim for Broken Windows?
If your windows are broken, you should take the following steps to file a claim with your insurance company:
- Document the damage. Take photos of the broken window and any other damage to your property.
- Contact your insurance company. Report the broken window and provide them with all of the necessary information, including the date and time of the damage, the cause of the damage, and the estimated cost of repair or replacement.
- Work with your insurance provider. Your insurance company will send an adjuster to inspect the damage. After the adjuster has completed their inspection, they will determine whether your claim is covered and how much they will pay for the repair or replacement.
- Repair or replace the windows. Once your claim has been approved, you can get the windows repaired or replaced.
Preventing Window Damage & Maintaining Coverage
There are a few things you can do to prevent window damage and maintain coverage under your homeowner’s insurance policy:
- Regular window maintenance: Inspect your windows regularly for signs of wear and tear. Repair any damage promptly to prevent it from getting worse.
- Home insurance discounts for precautions: Some insurance companies offer discounts on homeowners insurance premiums for taking steps to prevent window damage, such as installing storm shutters or security systems.
- Importance of having adequate coverage: Make sure you have enough coverage under your homeowner’s insurance policy to repair or replace your windows if they are damaged.
By taking these steps, you can help prevent window damage and ensure that you are covered if your windows are broken.