myth: homeowners insurance doesn’t cover vandalism

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Most people know that home insurance has their back against risks like tornadoes and burglary. But what about petty (and not so petty) vandalism? Oh yeah, that could be covered, too.

vandalism defined

You're probably familiar with vandalism. That is, you know it when you see it. Yet when asked to define this common crime, it can be tough to put into words. Does it include permanent and temporary damage? What if it was an accident? What if it's not visible?

To help clear things up, here's the FBI's definition of vandalism: "To willfully or maliciously destroy, disfigure, or deface any public or private property without consent … by cutting, tearing, breaking, marking, painting, drawing, covering with filth, or any other such means as may be specified by local law. Attempts are included."

While this casts a pretty wide net, the important takeaway is that if anyone intentionally does something to your home or valuables without your go ahead, there's a good chance it's considered vandalism.

does my homeowners policy include vandalism insurance?

Most insurers, including Esurance, offer vandalism insurance as part of a homeowners policy. However, as specific coverages vary from insurer to insurer, it's best to contact your provider to verify that you're covered; don't just assume.

You'd hate to be counting on vandalism insurance, only to find out after an incident that you need to pay out of pocket. If a basic homeowners plan doesn't include coverage for vandalism, you may be able to add it as a named peril.

Are you protected against vandalism? Get your fast, free quote today.

Keep in mind that vandalism coverage may not apply if your place is vacant for a significant amount of time, as could be the case with vacation homes or investment properties. Again, this varies from policy to policy, so be sure to speak with your own insurer about time-period restrictions when it comes to being away from home.

common types of vandalism

Graffiti is by far the most prevalent form of property vandalism, accounting for 35 percent of cases according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics. That being said, there's a lot more than just spray paint to worry about when it comes to your home. You may be glad to have protection against vandalism on your homeowners insurance policy in case:

  • Your outdoor lights or windows are broken
  • Your lawn is salted or garden dug up
  • Your house is egged
  • Your trees or bushes are cut
  • Your home is burned
  • Your plumbing is tampered with
  • Your locks are glued

And those are just several examples. Because vandalism can come in seemingly endless forms, and is often the result of random rebellion or teen peer pressure (roughly 40 percent of vandalism arrests involve juveniles), it can be especially hard to anticipate. That's all the more reason to back up your home and hard-earned savings with homeowners insurance to help protect against a variety of hazards.

start your free quote and be prepared for vandalism

If you're looking for top-notch protection for your castle, you can grab a fast, free home insurance quote to start planning your Esurance policy. With flexible coverage options and quality customer service from our licensed agents, you'll have all the help you need to react to vandalism, day or night, and get your home (and life) back in working order.

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Keep vandals and burglars out of your abode using these pointers.

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