If you have ever been in a hailstorm, you know how chaotic it can be. Hail can do a lot of damage to a car or home. And if your car or house has recently incurred hail damage, you may be wondering whether your insurance will cover the damage.
When it comes to car insurance, it depends on the type of policy you have as to whether your insurance policy will cover hail damage. If you carry a full coverage policy, which includes both collision and comprehensive coverage, the comprehensive portion of your policy will help cover the damages.
Most homeowners insurance policies include coverage for hail damage. But there are some states and areas in the U.S. where companies have restrictions on home insurance policies stating that hail damage to a house or other structures on the property is not covered.
Does auto insurance cover hail damage to my vehicle?
To have hail coverage for a car, you must carry the proper insurance. Most states only require certain levels of liability coverage. If this is all you carry on your vehicle, your insurance company will not cover hail damage to your car.
But individuals with a full coverage policy, which includes both comprehensive and collision coverage, will be able to file a claim for the hail damage and receive compensation for any necessary repairs.
Comprehensive car insurance covers non-accident related incidents, such as:
- Natural disasters
- Inclement weather
- Damage caused by animals
- Damage caused by a civil disturbance
Under a comprehensive car insurance policy, your insurance should cover hail damage. Some car insurance companies may include an exclusion for cosmetic damage that does not impact the functionality of your car, but this is more common in a homeowners insurance policy.
Will a homeowners insurance policy cover hail damage?
Homeowners insurance will cover damage to the roof of a home if hail causes the damage. But there are more policies now than ever that use exclusions to state that cosmetic damage to a home, or hail damage in general to a house in certain states and areas, will not be covered under the policy.
Because the rules for hail damage in a homeowners policy can vary drastically, you should consult your current policy to ensure your home and other structures on your property will be covered.
While a homeowners policy may cover hail damage to your home and additional structures on your property, it will not cover hail damage to your vehicle. Therefore, you must carry comprehensive car insurance to have hail damage covered by your insurance policy.
Can I file a claim for hail damage to my roof?
If you notice hail damage to your roof, you can file a claim with your homeowners insurance policy to have the roof of your house repaired or replaced.
The only exception to this would be if the policy on your house had an exclusion for hail coverage because of where you live. But most exclusions for hail damage on a homeowners insurance policy are if the damage is cosmetic.
To ensure the claim you file for hail damage is accepted, you should document the condition of your home’s roof both with pictures and in writing before incurring any damage. You can keep this information on hand and send it to your insurance company after hail damage occurs.
You will also want to document the damage and hire a professional contractor to assess the damage. Your insurance company will send an insurance adjuster to evaluate the damage to your roof, but having an assessment done by another professional will be helpful for you to determine whether the compensation your company offers is adequate.
How much does it cost to repair hail damage to a house?
Repairs for hail damage to a house are often much more expensive than repairs for hail damage to a vehicle.
The national average for hail damage repair on a home is over $10,000. However, if your home incurred extensive damage due to hail, repairs could cost nearly $50,000.
Because the deductible for a homeowners insurance policy is typically around $500, most people will file a claim with their homeowners insurance policies to cover the cost of the damage. But you can expect your rates for homeowners insurance to increase after filing a claim.
Will insurance rates go up if I file a claim for hail damage?
You should expect your homeowners or car insurance rates to increase after filing a claim for hail damage.
In terms of car insurance, the average cost to repair hail damage is nearly $3,000. However, if hail damages vehicle's windshield, repairs could cost thousands more. In this instance, filing a claim to help with coverage for hail damage would be wise, as you would only have to pay your deductible.
But, let's say you have a deductible of $500 and $600 damage caused by hail. You may want to consider paying for repairs out of pocket. This would help you keep your monthly rates for coverage by not filing a claim.
Some insurance companies consider the fact that the policyholder’s negligence did not cause the damage. In some instances, this may mean your insurance company will not raise your rates or will only raise them slightly.
What is cosmetic damage?
Because home insurance companies sometimes refuse to cover cosmetic damage to a house, many policyholders wonder what insurance companies consider cosmetic.
In most instances, insurance companies consider the damage to be cosmetic if it will not impact the functionality of the home or its parts. So if you have a metal roof on your home and hail dented the roof but did not cause any leaks, your homeowners insurance company could refuse to cover the damage.
But if you can make the case that the damage to your home or roof is causing or will cause leaks or other issues, your insurance company is likely to cover the cost of repairs minus your deductible.
Hail Damage and Insurance: The Bottom Line
Coverage can seem tricky when it comes to insurance coverage for hail damage.
In terms of car insurance, if you have a policy that includes comprehensive coverage, your insurance company should cover hail damage to your vehicle. But with homeowners insurance, coverage will depend on any exclusions in your policy.
If you have hail damage to the roof or any other part of your home and the damage is more than cosmetic, it should be covered under your standard homeowners insurance policy. But some companies write exclusions into policies in certain areas that are more prone to hail.
Familiarize yourself with your insurance policy to ensure your insurance company does not exclude hail damage. If you don’t like your current insurance policy, you can shop online and compare insurance rates with several different companies in your area. Comparing rates will allow you to see which company offers the coverage you want at a price you can afford.