Understanding Home And Auto Insurance Overlap

If you own both a home and a car, it's important that both have their own individual insurance coverage. This shouldn't be surprising, since you will want to protect these investments. What may be surprising is that sometimes there is overlap between these two types of coverage. The following guide can help you determine when you need to call the car insurance company or make a claim against your home's policy.


Vandalism to your car is no fun, especially if it involves theft of property from inside the car. Most auto policies only cover damage to the car itself. This means that you will make a claim against your car insurance for any broken windows or damaged exterior from the vandalism.

Your home insurance will cover the belongings in the vehicle. The car doesn't even need to be parked at home when the vandalism occurs, either. Home insurance covers your home's contents even when they aren't in your home.

Storm damage

Storm damage sometimes won't cover damage to a car, since some auto policies exclude damage that they consider "an act of God." Depending on the circumstances, your home insurance may step in and provide coverage.

Home insurance isn't going to cover hail or lightning damage. It may cover damages if your car is parked at home and a tree on your property blows down on top of it during a storm. You will need to contact both your auto and your home insurance to see if either one is willing to cover this type of damage.

Parking problems

The garage and driveway of your home are considered an extension of your home. Generally, if damage to your car happens because it is parked in either one of these locations, your first call is to the auto policy if you have full comprehensive coverage.

If you only carry the state minimum liability, though, your insurance won't cover damage to your car in these circumstances. Fortunately, if the damage occurs because of an issue with your home, such as the garage caught fire or the chimney collapsed onto the driveway, then your car may be covered underneath your homeowners policy. The amount of coverage may not be for as much as the value of the car, considering the limitations on your home policy, so it is best to keep comprehensive coverage on more expensive vehicles.

For more help in navigating your home and auto insurance needs, speak with an insurance company such as Keyes Insurance Services Inc.