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There are two main ways that broken windows are covered, either by standard renters insurance or by a landlord’s insurance.

Broken windows are covered by standard insurance policies under personal liability. If you’re found liable for damage done to your neighbor’s window or bodily injury, personal liability covers you for legal costs.

Landlord insurance is another way to protect against paying for repairs or the replacement of broken windows. If windows in your unit are broken due to covered damage, your landlord’s insurance policy usually covers it.

MoneyGeek created a guide about personal liability insurance to help you understand if you’re covered or not.

If you or a family member accidentally breaks another person’s window, it’s automatically covered by a majority of renters insurance policies since it falls under personal liability. Learn more about what renters insurance covers and doesn’t cover.

In this article:

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When Does Renters Insurance Cover Broken Windows?

There are several conditions to determine whether your renters insurance covers you for broken windows. Standard renters insurance policies will cover you if you or a family member breaks a neighbor’s window. However, it’s your landlord’s responsibility to file a claim if your window is broken due to a covered event.

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If you break a third-party’s window and are found liable, you’re covered under personal liability.

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If your unit's window breaks, coverage falls under your landlord's insurance policy.

Coverage for broken windows depends on whose windows were damaged. Renters insurance covers you if you break someone else’s window. Meanwhile, if your window is broken, your landlord’s insurance should cover it.

When Doesn’t Renters Insurance Cover Broken Windows?

Renters insurance doesn’t protect against expenses if you or a family member damages your unit’s window. In some cases, that will be your landlord’s responsibility. Instead, your renters insurance only covers you under personal liability if you or a loved one break a third-party’s window.

To avoid confusion, it’s best to read the fine print of your policy or contact your insurance provider.

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How to Prevent Broken Windows

It’s not advisable to rely solely on your insurance in case you break someone else’s windows or if your unit’s windows are damaged. There are several steps you can take to prevent damage to both your and your neighbor’s windows.

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    Consult an expert

    To ensure your unit is weather-proof, or at least well-protected from damage, we advise talking to experts like a glass professional.

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    Consider storm shutters

    Storm shutters are a great way to protect your windows from strong winds, rain or hail. There are different kinds of materials for storm shutters, like aluminum and wood, so it’s best to research which one fits your unit.

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    Play away from residential areas

    Ball games are a fun activity. However, it may not be a good idea to play in an area where it could bounce around or potentially break your window or your neighbor’s window.

Where to Buy Renters Insurance

Finding large and small insurers that offer renters insurance is fairly easy. MoneyGeek found that the average cost of renters insurance is roughly $13 per month. Keep in mind that personal factors can affect your rates.

Depending on the insurance provider, your premiums can vary. MoneyGeek provides a personal property calculator below so that you figure out your potential costs based on your needs. It’s also advisable to compare renters insurance rates to find the best option for you.


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About Mark Fitzpatrick

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Mark Fitzpatrick is a senior content director at MoneyGeek with over five years of experience analyzing the insurance market, conducting original research and creating content that can be personalized for every buyer. He has been quoted on insurance topics in several publications, including CNBC, NBC News and Mashable.

Mark earned a master’s degree in Economics and International Relations from Johns Hopkins University and a bachelor’s degree from Boston College. He is passionate about using his economics and insurance knowledge to bring transparency around financial topics and help others feel confident in their money moves.