Are solar panels covered by home insurance?

More and more Australian households are installing solar panels, embracing greener energy and potentially shaving money off their power bills. If you’re considering solar panels, it’s important to know you’ll have the cover you need to repair or replace them if they’re damaged by an insured event, such as hail or storm.

Do solar panels impact your home insurance policy?

Many insurance providers consider permanent fixtures like solar panels to be part of your building, so they include coverage for them in their home insurance policies. To be sure, though, you should always check the policy documents for any policy you’re considering.

Even if solar panels are theoretically covered, though, you should ensure that they’re reflected in your sum insured. Your sum insured is the maximum amount your insurance provider will pay out in the event of a claim, and should be reflected by how much it would cost to rebuild or restore your home to its undamaged state. Adding new fixtures – like solar panels – to your home will increase the amount you’d need to replace everything, so if you install solar panels but don’t update your sum insured accordingly, you could wind up underinsured.

Will you have to pay more for insurance?

Like other home improvements that add value to your property and bump up your sum insured, adding solar panels could affect your home insurance premium.

It’s easy to update your sum insured. Contact GIO to make sure your policy covers what you’d need to replace your solar panels should they become damaged or destroyed.

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What impact can solar panels have on your electricity bill?

Solar panels can help you save money in the long term, but there are some factors to consider.

  • If you’re living in the home long enough to recoup the installation costs.
  • Energy consumption. That is, whether your solar system generates enough power to keep up with your usage habits,
  • Usage patterns. Excess power generated during the daylight hours may be fed back into the grid, which can offset your bills.
  • Feed-in tariffs. So, payment for the power you generate from your home.
  • System size and how much power it generates.
  • Where you live. Eg, you may be in an area that produces more sunlight.
  • Installation costs.

The time it takes for your solar to start paying for itself will be different for every household. If you’re considering solar panels, it’s worth talking to your energy provider and shopping around for the best value.

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Insurance issued by AAI Limited ABN 48 005 297 807 trading as GIO. Consider the Product Disclosure Statement before buying this insurance.