Installing solar panels is a major home investment, and protecting that investment is important. Your homeowner’s insurance policy may not offer protection for solar panels unless you specifically add them to your policy.
Be sure to talk with your insurance carrier about policy adjustments when installing your panels. A major storm or fallen tree branches can do significant damage, substantially delaying your ROI on solar. Don’t get caught out-of-pocket on panels. This guide walks you through ensuring your panels are covered along with your home and its contents.
- Contact your insurance provider
- Assess coverage needs
- Get documentation & photos
- Review policy and sign
With all the information you need about solar panels and home insurance, you’re armed with what you need to get comprehensive coverage.
Have questions about solar panels and home insurance?
Call Photon Brothers at (720) 370‑3344 (Colorado) or (805) 351‑3371 (California) and talk with one of our dedicated solar professionals. Our perfect safety record and 5‑star quality service means we know how to navigate installation and insurance. Want a free quote? Click below to use our nifty online solar calculator!
Contact Your Insurance Provider
It’s common to need special riders to cover specific items with your homeowner’s insurance. Expensive jewelry, antiques, and other unusual items all need coverage separate from your general policy. Solar panels are no exception. Since all homes don’t come with solar panels installed and solar represents a significant investment, it may exceed typical policy limits for item replacement.
As soon as you start to plan your solar installation, it’s a good idea to call your insurance provider. Find out what exactly is covered by your policy and what changes you might need to make to add solar panels. After all, if solar panels add $30,000 to the value of your house, you’ll need to adjust the value of your insurance policy.
Assess Coverage Needs
Your coverage needs to change any time you make a major home improvement. A remodel can also add value to your home and might change the scope of your coverage. Have an agent walk you through what changes might need to happen with your policy after you install solar panels. They’ll cover all the different parts of a policy and how those can change.
Limits and Deductibles
Your policy limit is the maximum amount the insurance will pay when you make a claim. If your entire home was destroyed, along with its contents, the replacement value should equal the policy limit. Adding solar panels means you’ll likely need to up your limit. The deductible is what you pay before your insurance starts to pay. If you’re increasing your limit, you’ll also increase the cost of the coverage. You may want to also increase the deductible to help offset the price change.
Liability Coverage Needs
Liability coverage protects you from damage and injuries that happen to other people. If you had a guest in your home and they were injured due to your negligence, they could sue. Your liability coverage helps protect against these types of claims. As a homeowner, you likely don’t need a high-value policy for liability beyond whatever is included in most standard policies.
Equipment Breakdown and Malfunction
Some homeowner’s insurance policies include coverage for appliances and equipment malfunctions. If solar panels are covered by your policy, you’ll want to make sure that breakdowns are also covered.
Get Documentation & Photos
Documenting your new panels is often required when adding them to your policy. Any major change to your home means you should take pictures of the finished project and send all documentation about the project to your insurance company. You wouldn’t want to install top-of-the-line solar panels only to have your insurance company replace them with a lower quality. Documenting exactly what went into your installation means you get the right level of replacement coverage.
Review Policy and Sign
Once you’ve ironed out all the new details with your insurance company, take a few minutes to review the policy. If everything looks good, you can sign and go. If there are any additional changes needed, you can adjust before you commit. Many homeowner’s insurance policies already cover solar panels, so you might only need to change your coverage limits. Policies treat panels similarly to home improvements, such as adding a patio or putting in a deck.
Want expert solar advice? Photon Brothers is here to help!
Work with a team of licensed electricians and solar experts at Photon Brothers. We’ll design a custom solar solution for your home and help with all the paperwork along the way. Click below to get your free instant estimate today!