How To Make Break-In And Theft Claims On Home Insurance – Forbes Advisor

It may come as a surprise that many robberies occur during the day, according to the 2019 FBI Uniform Crime Report.

About half of all thefts take place during the day and about 34% at night. the other 16% are unknown. and thieves usually get away with a decent score. the median dollar value of property stolen from burglaries was $2,661.

Reading: How to claim stolen property to insurance

Burglary, as defined by the FBI, is an illegal entry into a structure with the intent to commit a felony or robbery. And while the 2019 FBI Uniform Crime Report shows a 9.5% decrease in robberies compared to 2018 and a 48.5% decrease compared to 2010, that doesn’t make crime any less terrifying to affected.

In addition to feeling violated, victims often report feeling angry, fearful and anxious, a sense of guilt, a lack of trust in others, and helplessness or loss of control.

After a break-in, you may not only find yourself emotionally traumatized by the event, but you may also have to deal with things like making repairs, changing locks, identifying lost items, and filing a home insurance claim.

Does home insurance cover theft and break-ins?

Theft is a problem covered by homeowners insurance. Home insurance will cover stolen personal property and will also pay for problems related to a break-in, such as the cost of repairing or replacing items that were damaged in a break-in. For example, if a forced entry damages the door and door jamb, your homeowners insurance may pay for repairs and new locks.

Here are some types of home insurance coverage that may apply if you are the victim of a home invasion and robbery:

  • dwelling coverage. This pays for repairs to your home if it is damaged in a break-in. for example, it can pay for broken windows and damaged doors.
  • personal property coverage. This pays to repair or replace your personal belongings if they are damaged or stolen. for example, if a thief knocks over an expensive lamp or steals your laptop.
  • Other structures coverage. This pays for repairs to separate structures on your property. for example, if your shed door is damaged in a break-in.
  • How much coverage do I have for robbery and theft?

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    The amount of coverage you have will depend on your policy limits and the type of coverage. Coverage for your home and other structures is pretty straightforward. For example, if you have a $250,000 limit on your homeowners coverage and your door was damaged in a burglary, repairs to your door would fall under your homeowners coverage, minus your deductible.

    Generally, the coverage limit for personal property is set between 50% and 70% of the homeowner’s coverage amount. For example, if you have homeowners coverage of $250,000 and purchased a policy that provides 70% personal property coverage, your belongings would be covered up to $175,000.

    But this is where personal property coverage gets a bit tricky. Certain types of items have what are called “sublimits,” meaning you will only be covered up to a certain amount, not the full limit of the personal property policy. For example, your policy might have a sublimit of $1,500 for stolen jewelry. That means you’ll only be covered up to that amount, even if the value of your stolen jewelry is more than $1,500.

    If you need more coverage for valuable items like jewelry, art or musical instruments, you can “schedule” them. For example, if you have a diamond ring valued at $5,000, you can program it for that amount and you would receive $5,000 if your ring was stolen. you may be able to schedule items without a deductible, depending on your insurer.

    Another thing to consider for your personal property coverage: replacement cost versus actual cash value. When you buy your home insurance policy, you will be able to choose between the two. replacement cost is more expensive, but replace a stolen item with a new version. Actual cash value coverage pays you only for the depreciated value of your belongings, which could leave you paying a lot of money if you want to replace them with new items.

    How do I file a burglary and burglary insurance claim?

    If you are the victim of a home invasion and robbery, here are the first steps you should take:

    • report the crime to the police. You may need to provide the police report to your insurance company in order to file a claim.
    • make emergency repairs. if the door is slammed open or a window is broken, have it repaired as soon as possible. be sure to save your receipts for reimbursement by your insurance company.
    • Take photos or videos of the damage. Document the areas of your home that were damaged or where missing items were stolen.
    • File a claim with your insurance company. The insurance adjuster will review your policy, including applicable coverage types, sublimits, scheduled items, and deductibles.
    • If any personal belongings have been stolen, it’s a good idea to provide your home insurance company with the following information when possible:

      • where and when the item was purchased
      • the estimated value of your item
      • the make and model of your item
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        To verify the value of your stolen items, your insurance company may request:

        • bank statements
        • credit card statements
        • photographs
        • receipts
        • serial numbers
        • guarantees
        • One of the best ways to make a home insurance claim go as quickly and easily as possible is to create a home inventory. A good home inventory will help you keep track of your belongings and maximize your claim payout.

          home security devices can help you save money

          If you take steps to protect your home from break-ins, you may be able to get a discount on your home insurance. this may include:

          • installation of locks on exterior doors
          • install a burglar alarm that alerts the local police
          • use smart or connected home technology with burglary alerts
          • install security cameras, wireless motion sensors or video doorbells
          • Before spending the money on a new home security system, it’s a good idea to first talk to your homeowners insurance agent to find out what types of systems qualify for a discount. You can also ask if you already qualify for certain discounts. For example, discounts may be available if you live in a gated community protected by security guards, key locking devices, or green cards.

            The cost of theft insurance claims has been steadily declining since 2014, according to the October 2020 Home Trends report from lexisnexis, a data analytics company. lexisnexis says this could be due to deterrents like home security devices. Fifty-nine percent of those surveyed said they own smart security devices, such as cameras and wireless motion sensors.

            burglary and theft resources

            If you are the victim of a burglary, resources may be available through the Office for Victims of Crime. For example, you may be eligible for financial assistance through the federal Crime Victims Act for expenses not covered by home insurance, such as medical services, mental health counseling, lost wages, and other costs.

            here is a statewide directory of victim compensation programs.

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            frequently asked questions (faqs)

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