If your business was vandalized, you’re probably eager to repair the damage so that it affects your business as little as possible. You’re not alone. Every business owner who deals with vandalism hopes to put it behind them quickly.
Defacing someone’s business is never cool. It shows disrespect and disregard for that person’s business and property. And it’s usually personal. Vandalism is an act of aggression to make a statement. It’s meant to get the business owner’s attention.
But what exactly is vandalism? How do you know if what was done counts as vandalism?
How can you avoid vandalism affecting your business?
How should you respond to acts of vandalism?
And do you have to pay for your repairs? Or is there vandalism insurance?
And if there’s vandalism insurance, how does it work?
These are all great questions to ask!
The good news is that we have the answers you’re looking for. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know to prevent vandalism and how to respond if your business was vandalized.
What Is Vandalism?
Let’s start by defining vandalism. According to Merriam-Webster, vandalism is “willful or malicious destruction or defacement of public or private property.” It’s a broad definition because quite a few malicious acts can count as vandalism. Examples include:
- Spray painting someone’s property to deface it
- “Egging” someone’s car or house
- Keying someone’s car to remove paint from it
- Breaking a window
- Spray painting graffiti on public property
- Slashing car tires
- Defacing a park bench
- Making changes to or removing a street sign
- Physically damaging someone’s property
Note that all of these forms of vandalism involve defacing property without permission. If you have permission to spray paint a building, park bench, or other private or public property, you’re an artist, not a vandal.
However, things like egging, breaking windows, and slashing tires should be off-limits. There’s nothing artistic about damaging a vehicle or covering a home in raw eggs. They are crimes punishable by law for a reason.
Ways to Avoid Vandalism
Maybe you’re reading this blog because you’re worried about vandalism but haven’t fallen victim to it yet. That’s good! You can take preventative measures to discourage vandals from picking your property:
- Install bright security lights around your property.
- Use unbreakable glass and fixtures.
- Install fencing around your property.
- Plant shrubs and bushes to make your property more difficult to vandalize.
- Keep security gates, entrances, and exits locked at night.
- Install video surveillance.
- Hire a security guard.
We can’t guarantee that these precautionary measures will prevent vandalism, but they can deter the vandal from picking your property first. Vandals pick the easiest targets. They might consider you only after those easier targets — unless they have a personal vendetta.
Who Pays for Vandalism Repairs?
First, you’ll need to determine if your business property insurance covers vandalism repairs. There’s usually a list of “perils” that are covered. If vandalism isn’t listed under a peril (like rioting), your insurance likely doesn’t cover it.
However, you’ll want to call your insurance company to verify whether they cover it. The last thing you want is to pay out of pocket for repairs your insurance company would have made!
Another thing to know about is your insured property vs. your covered property.
Insured property refers to the physical property, which includes fixtures, building glass, attached signs, awnings, and canopies. Covered property includes furniture, machinery, equipment, stock, merchandise, etc. Knowing the difference between these property types can be helpful when dealing with insurance.
If your property insurance covers what’s been vandalized, you’ll likely have a deductible to pay for your repairs. Once you’ve met your deductible, your property insurance will cover the rest of the repair costs.
Vandalism can easily cost thousands, so property insurance is a great way to protect yourself from emptying your wallet to restore your business. It might seem like an added cost to running a business, but you’ll be glad you did it should your business be vandalized.
What Do I Do If I’ve Been Vandalized?
We’re sorry to hear your business was vandalized. The good news is that quickly responding to it can mitigate its effects on your business. And that’s exactly what you want.
Your top priority is to get your property cleaned up so you can get back to business as usual. Depending on the severity of the vandalism, you may need to close shop until repairs have been made, which could take time. You might need to relocate your business or order new machinery temporarily to continue operations.
The sad reality of vandalism is that it can affect business and decrease your sales and revenue. Unfortunately, in some cases, there’s nothing you can do except wait for new machinery or repairs.
When it comes to repairs, you have two options: complete your repairs and send receipts to your insurance company for reimbursement, or hire a professional company that specializes in vandalism repair.
A professional company will likely clean up faster than you could on your own. Your best bet is to call vandalism repair companies and see if anyone can come out immediately. Most of these companies understand the urgency of your situation and will come out as quickly as possible.
Restoremasters Can Help
If your business was vandalized, you’ll want to respond quickly; that’s where we come in. Restoremasters has been serving Northern Utah residents for decades. We cover all of Salt Lake and Utah county. Combined, our team offers over 100 years of restoration experience, guaranteeing you the expertise you need to restore your business entirely.
Restoremasters can handle any type of vandalism, including spray painting, egging, keying, broken windows, and graffiti. Our professional restoration services ensure that your business will look as good as new.
Vandalism is an awful crime to fall victim to, but Restoremasters is here for you. Contact us today to schedule your restoration.