Does insurance cover stolen Air-conditioner in a rental unit?

Asked by Jerry Zheng, Milpitas, CA Wed Jan 11, 2012

My air-conditioner (alone with the heat-pump) was stolen recently from the backyard of my vacant rental SFH. This happened between short period when old/new tenants moved out/in. Please provide advice to items below:

1] Should I file police report for this and does it help in any way?
2] Would my home insurance cover this loss (whole or partially), what type of claim would this be if it is covered?

Thanks in advance for your time.

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John Arendsen’s answer
John Arendsen, Agent, Leucadia, CA
Thu Jan 12, 2012
You should always file a police report when dealing with a theft as soon as you find out about it.
Whether or not it's covered depends on the terms, conditions, inclusions and exclusions along with the deductible. You need to read over your policy and be familiar with it thoroughly before you even file a claim. You want to be as up to snuff as is possible when your adjuster pays you a visit. KNOW YOUR POLICY!

Dealing with your insurance agent is one thing. They only sell you the policy and collect a commission and that's technically where their responsibility ends. But having said that most agents will provide excellent ongoing service because renewels is what drives their residual commissions.

But the real truth with the policy is when you file a claim. Then you are no longer dealing with your agent/salesman. You're dealing with the insurance company's adjuster. Their sole purpose aside from assessing a value of your loss is to try to figure out how not to have to pay you. Or pay you as little as they can get away with. That's why you need to STUDY YOUR POLICY.

Insurance adjusters work for the insurance company. In fact some adjusters actually get paid a bonus for figuring out how they can keep from having to pay you anything or as little as they can get away with. Their job is to save the insurance company money. That's why you need to bone up on exactly what your insurance company covers.

If you are covered then you need to be aware that not only will you have to eat the deductible they will also try to hit you up for what they call DEPRECIATION. If you take a cash settlement they will hit you hard with depreciation.

If you replace the AC which I'm sure you fully intend to do then depending on whether or not you have what they call "TOTAL REPLACEMTNE", they have to cover the full value of the replacement less the deductible. If you don't have a "TOTAL REPLACEMENT" policy then get prepared to take a pretty big hit on your final settlement.
1 vote
Jim Walker, Agent, Carmichael, CA
Wed Jan 11, 2012
The insurance company will want to know that you filed a police report. One of the real estate agents gave you a link to do the report online which seems the least troublesome way to file a police report. It is not like they are going to send someone out to dust for prints...

You might also let your assemblyman and state senator know that you would like to see the criminals who commit these types of crimes caught and given stiff sentences.
1 vote
Ed Favinger, Agent, Folsom, CA
Wed Jan 11, 2012
Hi Jerry...

I guess this is the sign of the times huh...

You should have some coverage... there will be deductions of course and as Miss Elizabeth said, they do have some weasel words in their policies regarding this issue if the house was vacant...

Pull your policy out and read it over or call your agent...

Let us know what happens ok...? This would be some good information to pass on...

I hope this helps...

Make it a great day...
1 vote
Dan Tabit, Agent, Issaquah, WA
Wed Jan 11, 2012
Every insurance policy is different, so all anyone here could do is guess. If I were in your shoes, I'd call my agent and ask what they suggest. My agent has been very helpful and frank. Sometimes, the deductable makes it not worth the effort, other times it's clearly the way to go. A discussion with your insurance agent is not filing a claim, unless you decide to make the formal claim.
1 vote
89jackmoore, Home Buyer, New York, NY
Tue Sep 22, 2015
I am not completely sure about whether or not the insurance will cover this. I'm going to say that's probably a question for your insurance agent/provider. As for the police statement, of course! Definitely file a report whenever anything, especially something of such value, is stolen. You never know, maybe someone saw something suspicious and didn't think much of it. Always file when you're burglarized.
0 votes
Jackson Will…, Home Buyer, Provo, UT
Fri May 15, 2015
I think this qualifies as some form of theft, and you could definitely get help with this. I would suggest contacting the police for sure. You should also contact your insurance company about this to see if your coverage will help with this. If it does, they'd be able to tell you what kind of claim to follow and also how much they'd be able to help you. Good luck getting this all figured out. It sucks to not have air conditioning in the summer.
0 votes
Kelsey Compa…, Home Buyer, Provo, UT
Fri Apr 17, 2015
That is a great question and it sounds like something you should ask your insurance provider. I would assume that it would be covered even in a rental. However you could even speak with and AC unit provider on any questions regarding situations like this.
0 votes
James Simon, Home Buyer, New York, NY
Mon Feb 23, 2015
I think that it definitely counts. You should report it so that you can replace it quickly. I feel bad for the person who stole your AC. Who does that kind of thing? It's a horrible thing to steal, seeing as you're condemning someone to a life of overheated misery for a few weeks. I wish people would realize that theft is not the answer.
0 votes
Jay Taylor, , Santa Ana, CA
Wed Nov 13, 2013
Check your insurance policy or contact your insurance provider to confirm that it is covered under your insurance policy or not.
0 votes
Danielle Van…, , Elk Grove, CA
Thu Sep 12, 2013
Sorry this is late... Hope everything worked out!

Just for future reference:

-“maintenance equipment stored on the property” is covered under your coverage A (or dwelling coverage).

-Always review your policy with your agent to know exactly what you are covered for, before you sign on the dotted line!

-Sometimes your policy can seem like a foreign language. If you're confused, the best way to understand is call and ask.

-Be sure to file a police report with any stolen property :)

Again, I hope everything worked out well!
0 votes
Teri Andrews…, Agent, Auburn, CA
Thu Jan 12, 2012
You should contact your insurance agent to see if your policy covers your loss. They will most likely want you to file a police report, which can probably be done on the police department's website that services the area where the home is. Also it would be a good idea to take some photos for your records.
0 votes
DeeDee Riley, Agent, El Dorado Hills, CA
Thu Jan 12, 2012
Hi Jerry
So sorry to hear that. Insurance is really not in our realm as Realtors other than advising you to get it. Best to call your insurance agent. What makes the good insurance agents stand out are ones you can talk to about any situation and you know they are giving you great advise; not just telling you things that will make them money. I guess that goes for most professionals you hire from your attorney to your hair stylist!

I would definitely file a report with the police though!

Best of luck,

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0 votes
Kylee Roe, Agent, Sacramento, CA
Wed Jan 11, 2012
Oh my gosh! So sorry this happened!
Absolutely call your insurance company and there should be some coverage, if not all--depends on your policy of course.
File a report with Sac Pd, or Sheriff's Dept., depending on what jurisdiction you are in.
0 votes
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