Your Insurance Company Might Not Pay for These 4 Damages

If you have a home or car, you need insurance. Yet, chances are good that you’re spending a lot of money on such coverage each month. And in all that fine print, there are likely exceptions and exclusions to that coverage that might surprise you.

Do you really know what your polices cover? Here’s a little quiz to test your knowledge:

What if your $50,000 stamp collection goes up in flames with your house?

Radim Ratnikov / Shutterstock.com
Radim Ratnikov / Shutterstock.com

The collection is unlikely to be covered unless your homeowners insurance policy has a rider specifically for it. Even then, your insurance company may not pay the whole amount.

Insurance company Travelers notes that standard homeowners policies may restrict payouts for valuable items, which can include:

  • Antiques
  • Jewelry
  • Furs
  • Firearms
  • Silverware

Some policies may also limit coverage for the contents of your home to a certain percentage of the home’s value.

You should be able to buy a rider for high-value items. Unfortunately, even these riders can have limitations, such as covering only up to $10,000 per item, for example. If you can’t get enough coverage through your homeowners plan, you may want to take out a separate policy specifically for your valuables.

What if terrorists bomb your house?

Fer Gregory / Shutterstock.com
Fer Gregory / Shutterstock.com

Your loss should be covered — but only if the U.S. isn’t at war.

The Insurance Information Institute explains:

Standard homeowners policies don’t specifically reference terrorism but, as your home insurance covers damage to property and personal possessions due to explosion, fire and smoke, acts of terrorism are generally covered.

Personal and commercial insurance policies have long-standing exclusions for war as well as nuclear, biological, chemical and radiological attacks, according to the institute. This is because damage from acts of war and the aforementioned types of attacks “are fundamentally uninsurable,” the institute says.

Other common exclusions on standard homeowners policies include damage from earthquakes, flooding and mold. To learn more, check out “Floods, Wildfires and Earthquakes: Are You Covered?

What if your kid’s computer is stolen at college?

Roman Globa / Shutterstock.com
Roman Globa / Shutterstock.com

Your homeowners insurance policy should cover your child’s belongings if he or she is a full-time students living in a dorm.

Part-time students or those living in off-campus housing may need to get their own coverage, however. Check with your insurance company for the particulars of your policy, including policy limits, as we detail in “How to Insure Your College Student.”

What if someone puts sugar in your gas tank and ruins the engine?

Jenoche / Shutterstock.com
Jenoche / Shutterstock.com

Your auto insurance company should pay out the claim — buy only if you have comprehensive coverage. Many comprehensive policies cover vandalism such as graffiti, key damage and, yes, even sugar in the gas tank.

Don’t forget that even if your policy covers the damage, your deductible will still apply to vandalism claims.

Tell us your insurance story in the comments below or on our Facebook page.

How to find cheaper car insurance in minutes

Getting a better deal on car insurance doesn't have to be hard. You can have The Zebra, an insurance comparison site compare quotes in just a few minutes and find you the best rates. Consumers save an average of $368 per year, according to the site, so if you're ready to secure your new rate, get started now.

Read Next
12 Things Everyone Should Stop Buying This Year
12 Things Everyone Should Stop Buying This Year

These convenient household products come with hidden costs that you might not have considered.

10 Bad Money Habits That Are Robbing You Blind
10 Bad Money Habits That Are Robbing You Blind

Here’s how to change those bad behaviors.

How to Get Rid of 6 Hard-to-Sell Things
How to Get Rid of 6 Hard-to-Sell Things

Find out where to sell, donate or recycle items — and feel good about it.

Can My Wife Use My Social Security Benefits While Letting Hers Grow?
Can My Wife Use My Social Security Benefits While Letting Hers Grow?

Your self-discipline in not uttering three little words helps determine whether you can use a key claiming strategy.

Never Buy These 12 Things at a Thrift Store
Never Buy These 12 Things at a Thrift Store

Sometimes a great deal is not worth it — or, even worse, is dangerous.

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Most Popular
Will I Get My Ex-Husband’s Social Security When He Dies?
Will I Get My Ex-Husband’s Social Security When He Dies?

Two factors determine how much money is coming to you.

7 Ways to Boost Your Credit Score Fast
7 Ways to Boost Your Credit Score Fast

Your financial security might soon depend upon the strength of your credit score.

21 Things You Should Always Buy at a Dollar Store
21 Things You Should Always Buy at a Dollar Store

Dollar stores have great bargains on these familiar purchases. Yes, even pregnancy tests

5 Household Disinfectants That Can Destroy the Coronavirus
5 Household Disinfectants That Can Destroy the Coronavirus

You likely already have some of these products at home.

6 Reasons I Will Never Trust Suze Orman
6 Reasons I Will Never Trust Suze Orman

Beware: The self-proclaimed personal finance expert has a track record that suggests more sizzle than steak.

13 Brilliant Bulk-Buy Items on Amazon
13 Brilliant Bulk-Buy Items on Amazon

Every household should have these products on hand. Buying them in bulk on Amazon saves you cash.

20 Things That Are Actually Worth Stockpiling
20 Things That Are Actually Worth Stockpiling

You probably don’t need a year’s supply of toilet paper to survive an outbreak, but consider stocking up on these items.

America’s Most Reliable Appliance Brand Is a Surprise
America’s Most Reliable Appliance Brand Is a Surprise

Have you heard of this appliance manufacturer?

This Type of Social Security Benefit Is Often Overlooked
This Type of Social Security Benefit Is Often Overlooked

The Social Security Administration is not helping certain people get money to which they are entitled, a report says.

Getting These 2 Shots Could Reduce Your Risk of Dementia
Getting These 2 Shots Could Reduce Your Risk of Dementia

These vaccines may lower the risk of Alzheimer’s disease by up to 40%.

9 Everyday Problems You Can Solve With Vaseline
9 Everyday Problems You Can Solve With Vaseline

Forget expensive specialty products. Good ol’ petroleum jelly can address many common annoyances.

16 Amazon Purchases That We Are Loving Right Now
16 Amazon Purchases That We Are Loving Right Now

These practical products make everyday life a little easier.

8 Things That Are Free in August
8 Things That Are Free in August

As summer enters the home stretch, we’ve rounded up these sizzling freebies.

19 Purchases That Buyers Almost Always Regret
19 Purchases That Buyers Almost Always Regret

Think twice before buying these things.

19 High-Paying Jobs You Can Get With a 2-Year Degree
19 High-Paying Jobs You Can Get With a 2-Year Degree

These jobs pay more than the typical job in the U.S. — and no bachelor’s degree is required.

7 Tips for Building an Emergency Stockpile
7 Tips for Building an Emergency Stockpile

A pandemic or natural disaster could leave you reliant on your existing food supply. Is your pantry prepared?

8 of the Worst Things to Buy at a Dollar Store
8 of the Worst Things to Buy at a Dollar Store

Not everything sold at dollar stores is a great bargain or a safe purchase. Here’s our list of products to avoid.

41 Things You Should Never Buy
41 Things You Should Never Buy

Some purchases are just plain dumb. Give yourself — and your budget — a break. Don’t spend money on this stuff.

Homeowners Say These 2 Kitchen Appliance Brands Are Best
Homeowners Say These 2 Kitchen Appliance Brands Are Best

One brand takes five of the top honors, while another ranks highest in three categories.

View More Articles

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Add a Comment

Our Policy: We welcome relevant and respectful comments in order to foster healthy and informative discussions. All other comments may be removed. Comments with links are automatically held for moderation.