Table of Contents
Hail Storms and Insurance
When hailstones fall like angry golf balls, they don’t discriminate between roofs and hoods. Whether you’re a homeowner, a car owner, or both, understanding your insurance coverage for hail damage is crucial. Let’s unravel this icy mystery together.
Does Insurance Cover Hail Damage to Your Car?
Your car’s worst enemy might just be a hailstorm. But fear not, for insurance can be your shield.
- Comprehensive Insurance: This covers hail damage to your car. This is often what people refer to as “full coverage”. In most cases, so long as you have this coverage on your car insurance, you’re going to be covered.
- Liability Insurance: Sorry, this won’t cover your car’s hail damage.
Conditions and Limitations
- Deductibles: You’ll likely pay a deductible first. Most people will carry a $500 or $1,000 deductible on their car insurance. Before you tun in a claim, make sure the damage is going to exceed the amount of your deductible.
- Coverage Limits: Most policies will cover the full extent of the damage. If the amount of damage exceeds the value of the vehicle then the insurance company may total your vehicle instead of fix it.
Does Insurance Cover Hail Damage to Your Home?
Hail can also wreak havoc on your home’s roof, siding, and even windows.
- Homeowner’s Insurance: Typically covers hail damage, but check for exclusions. Most normal home insurance policies will cover hail without any exclusions, but as we always say, check your individual policy first to make sure you know what you’re covered for.
- Dwelling Coverage: This part of your homeowner’s policy specifically covers the structure of your home.
Conditions and Limitations
- Deductibles: Similar to auto insurance, you’ll have a deductible. Most homeowners carry a higher deductible on their homeowners insurance. Make sure you’re aware of what your deductible is before you file a claim.
- Coverage Limits: Check if there’s a maximum coverage limit. There generally would not be for something like a hail claim, but it’s always best to know before a problem arises. Check with your home insurance agent first.
Filing an Insurance Claim for Hail Damage
Whether it’s your car or your home, the steps for filing a claim are similar.
- Document the Damage: Photos are your best friend. Your claim will run much smoother if everything is documented from beginning to end.
- Contact Your Insurance Provider: ASAP. The sooner you get them the information they need, the sooner they can begin their process of helping you.
- Get an Estimate: For homes, this might involve a home inspection; for cars, a trip to the body shop. The insurance company may come up with their own estimates, but you can and should get your own estimates as well, from people you know and trust.
Pro Tip: Consult with an independent insurance broker to ensure you’re adequately covered.
Preventing Hail Damage
Prevention is worth a pound of cure, whether it’s your home or car.
- For Cars: Use covered parking or car covers. Especially if the weather forecast calls for bad weather, make sure you get your vehicle to a covered spot!
- For Homes: Consider impact-resistant roofing materials. Apart from that, there isn’t much you can do to protect your home from a hail storm. Unless you have a giant pop-up cover for your entire house!
The Cost of Repairing Hail Damage
The cost varies based on the damage’s severity and the type of repair.
- For Cars: Paintless dent repair is usually cheaper. We see many vehicles that seemingly have very little damage, only to be totaled out by the insurance company. Even though the dents are small, if they cover your vehicle completely, it can be costly to repair.
- For Homes: Costs can escalate if windows or siding are damaged. Additionally, if your roof is damage, the cost can skyrocket. In many cases, the entire roof would need to be replaced…and that isn’t cheap!
Tip: Always get multiple estimates and work with reputable repair shops or contractors.
Understanding your insurance coverage for hail damage, whether for your home or car, is not just a good idea—it’s essential. Reach out to us for a quote or policy review to ensure you’re properly covered.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Will filing a hail damage claim increase my insurance premium?
- It varies by provider and policy. While it’s true that any insurance claim on your auto and home insurance has the potential to raise your deductible, your rates wont always go up because of a claim. Most every time you file a claim on your home, regardless if it was your fault or not, your rates will go up. On your car insurance, some companies will not charge you more premium because of a comprehensive claim. Some insurance companies will charge you a lot because of a comprehensive claim and some will only charge you a little.
What should I do if my car or home is already damaged by hail?
- Document the damage and contact your insurance provider. If you had an active policy, with the correct coverage when the incident and damage occurred, then in most cases you should have coverage. Some policies will have limits built into them as to how much time you have to file a claim. However, for the most part, so long as you report it within a year, you should have no problem getting it covered.
Is paintless dent repair covered by auto insurance?
- Typically, yes, under comprehensive coverage.
Should I get comprehensive insurance for hail damage if I live in a hail-prone area?
- Absolutely. It’s a wise investment for both home and auto owners. Not only does this cover you for hail damage, but it gives you better coverage for anything else that could happen to your home or your car. More coverage always equals peace of mind.
And there you have it—a guide to navigating the stormy world of hail damage and insurance for both your home and car. Stay safe, and make sure you’re covered!