Does homeowners insurance cover theft outside the home?

Yes, most policies come with a limited amount of off-premises coverage that extends to your personal belongings outside of the home.

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Stephanie Nieves

Stephanie Nieves

Editor & Home and Auto Insurance Expert

Stephanie Nieves is a former editor and insurance expert at Policygenius, where she covered home and auto insurance. Her work has also appeared in Business Insider, Money, HerMoney, PayScale, and The Muse.

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You probably know that your homeowners insurance protects your home and possessions inside the residence. But what about your belongings stored off-site? Can homeowners insurance reimburse you if your things are stolen outside of your home?

The answer is generally yes. Most standard homeowners insurance policies come with a limited amount of off-premises theft coveragegenerally 10% of your total personal property coverage limit. However, depending on the value of your damaged or stolen items, this limit might not be enough to pay for all of it.

To ensure your expensive valuables are fully covered while you're out and about or on vacation, consider adding a scheduled personal property coverage endorsement — or personal article floaters — to your policy. Under this coverage, scheduled items are insured to their full value anywhere in the world.

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Does homeowners insurance include off-premises theft coverage?

Yes, home insurance covers the cost to replace your personal belongings if they're damaged or stolen from inside your home or anywhere else in the world. However, coverage for belongings stored off-site is typically limited to 10% of your personal property coverage limit.

That means if you have $175,000 in personal property coverage, your insurance company can reimburse you up to $17,500 if your items are stolen or damaged by a covered peril away from your property.

Here are some scenarios where you'll likely be reimbursed for theft outside of your home.

Theft from a vehicle

In the event someone breaks into your car and steals your stuff, it's your homeowners insurance — not your auto insurance — that pays to replace your belongings.

Theft while on vacation

If your luggage or other valuables are stolen while you're on vacation, homeowners insurance can reimburse you for new items.

Theft from a college dorm

Your homeowners insurance policy generally extends to your college student while they're living on campus. That means if your child’s laptop is stolen from their dorm room, you may be able to use your homeowners insurance to replace it.

However, your child’s belongings may not be covered if they're stolen from an off-campus residence.

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Off premises theft coverage limits

Homeowners insurance covers personal property theft outside of your home, but expensive jewelry and electronics generally have lower coverage limits, or sublimits. Here are the most typical sublimits.

Items with special limits

Sublimit

Money

$200 (includes coins and medals)

Securities

$1,500 (including stamps)

Watercraft

$1,500

Electronics

$1,500

Jewelry

$2,500 (when stolen)

Furs

$2,500 (when stolen)

Silverware

$2,500 (when stolen)

Guns

$2,500 (when stolen)

Business property (on premises)

$2,500

Business property (off premises)

$250

Additional coverage for theft outside of your home

To cover your personal belongings to their full value — or at least for more than the sublimits in your policy — talk to your insurer about increasing your sublimits on certain valuables for an additional cost.

Scheduled personal property endorsement

A scheduled personal property endorsement provides higher limits on expensive valuables and provides broader coverage than a standard policy. Under your standard coverage, expensive jewelry, firearms, and furs may not be sufficiently covered — scheduled personal property coverage can insure these items up to their full value.

For example, your policy may have a sublimit of $1,500 for jewelry, but you might own a $5,500 engagement ring that you want to insure. By scheduling it with a personal property endorsement, you can raise the coverage limit of that ring to insure it up to its full value.

When will homeowners insurance not cover theft outside the home?

Homeowners insurance generally covers theft on and off your property, but there are some caveats to this coverage. Trailers, campers, and watercraft that are stolen away from your home typically will not be covered, and neither will cars and other vehicles that would be covered by auto insurance or another type of property insurance.

Not every home insurance policy includes off-premises coverage, either, so check with your insurer to see if you’re covered for belongings stolen away from your home (and if so, for how much).

Author

Editor & Home and Auto Insurance Expert

Stephanie Nieves

Editor & Home and Auto Insurance Expert

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Stephanie Nieves is a former editor and insurance expert at Policygenius, where she covered home and auto insurance. Her work has also appeared in Business Insider, Money, HerMoney, PayScale, and The Muse.

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