For some pet owners, cats are more than just adorable fuzz balls that bounce off walls and chase after birds. They’re part of the family and will tag along on vacations, family photo shoots, and dinner parties.
However, cats are always up to no good and can easily hurt themselves or damage your or someone else’s property. Homeowner’s insurance should cover any property damage, but does it cover cats? It depends on the case. In most households, the cat is part of the family and, as such, will get covered for injuring someone else or damaging their property. However, most insurance providers will have numerous conditions on a cat’s coverage.
Keep reading to learn everything about homeowner’s insurance and cats.
When Does Homeowner’s Insurance Cover Pet Damage?
Personal liability coverage in homeowner’s insurance shields your family members from liability when someone gets injured on your property. In many households, the cat is considered a part of the family. For this reason, they will be covered for injuring someone else or damaging their property. This coverage extends beyond your property and covers damages and injuries outside the home, like in the park or at a friend’s home.
However, insurance companies have pretty strict conditions on your cat’s coverage. Most insurers have restrictions on the type of breed, the kind of damage, and the type of scenarios their policies cover. Check with your insurer and determine the terms and conditions of your cat’s coverage.
For instance, some insurers only cover damage to someone else’s property, not your own. They’ll cover repairs when your cat scratches and destroys the neighbor’s carpet but won’t do the same for yours. Other insurers cover damage and injuries across the entire spectrum, meaning you and your neighbor will get new carpets should your cat do the worst.
When Does Homeowner’s Insurance Not Cover Your Cat?
Homeowner’s insurance doesn’t cover any illnesses and injuries your pet sustains. They also don’t cover your cat’s death, but some will compensate you if your cat gets lost or if someone steals it. However, this coverage isn’t standard practice with most insurance policies.
We advise using tracking microchips or collars with trackers to monitor your cat’s whereabouts. Cats are always up and about, and it’s easy for them to get lost or whisked away by a stranger.
What Determines Whether Homeowner’s Insurance Covers My Cats?
The risk factor for insuring cats and other pets explains why most insurance companies are averse to covering these creatures. Exotic cat breeds typically have limited or zero liability coverage with most insurers. The same applies to any cat with an extensive bite history or a history of aggressive behavior. Cats in these categories are too risky to qualify for coverage.
If your homeowner’s insurance doesn’t cover your cat, you could always consider pet insurance. This policy covers medical expenses (diagnosis and treatment), third-party liability, loss of the pet, and even holiday cancellation.
How Much Should I Expect to Pay for Homeowner’s Insurance That Covers My Cat?
Average homeowner’s insurance in the US costs about $1,428 per year, which translates to $119 per month. Most insurance companies mark up their policy premiums when coverage includes pets. This is especially true for exotic breeds or cats that are considered high-risk.
Homeowner’s insurance that covers cats covers liability only. As such, you’ll get coverage up to your liability limit. However, you can always opt for an umbrella policy that extends its liability coverage, but this would be unnecessary for mostly minor pet damage and could come in handy when lawsuits are involved.
It’s worth noting that umbrella coverage means paying a few extra hundred bucks every year. However, since lawsuits because of cat bites are extremely rare, opting for this would be unwise.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Is Cat Coverage Standard With Homeowner’s Insurance?
Unfortunately, most homeowner’s insurance policies don’t cover cats; however, a handful of them do. These policies only include limited liability coverage for bodily injuries and property damage for third parties.
My Cat Hurt Another Cat. Will My Homeowner’s Insurance Cover It?
Your cat hurting another cat counts as third-party liability and thus is covered by homeowner’s insurance. However, should your cat be involved in a brawl with another cat, the policy only covers the other cat’s medical costs but not yours.
Not all homeowners’ insurance policies cover cats and those that do have stringent restrictions for the same. Most insurers use pet coverage as a perk to attract customers but don’t offer much in terms of value for money.
If you’re truly concerned about the safety and well-being of your cat, consider getting pet insurance instead. That way, you can protect your pet from theft, illnesses, and injuries while getting the most bang for your buck.
Featured Image Credit By: Andrey_Popov, Shutterstock
- When Does Homeowner’s Insurance Cover Pet Damage?
- When Does Homeowner’s Insurance Not Cover Your Cat?
- What Determines Whether Homeowner’s Insurance Covers My Cats?
- How Much Should I Expect to Pay for Homeowner’s Insurance That Covers My Cat?
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- Is Cat Coverage Standard With Homeowner’s Insurance?
- My Cat Hurt Another Cat. Will My Homeowner’s Insurance Cover It?
- Closing Thoughts