Did you know Florida gets hit by hurricanes once every three years? Miami, Cape Canaveral, and Tampa are the top locations that suffer severe damage due to cyclones and storms. As the years go by, these disasters are becoming more prevalent and dangerous.
That's why homeowners, especially in Florida, are advised to have hurricane insurance. It will help lower the financial burden caused by the disaster and provide a sense of security to the homeowners.
Despite that, many people are unaware of how to file for a claim and avail of an appropriate amount if a hurricane damages their property. If you are also worried about the insurance claim, continue reading to know what potential steps you can take.
What Is Hurricane Insurance?
As the name suggests, hurricane insurance policies will aid in protecting your property from damage done by the hurricane, tropical storms, heavy rain, hail storms, and more.
Hurricane damages are severe and devastating. Thus, for people residing in a hurricane-prone zone, such as Florida, it is recommended to have coverage that is enough to rebuild the home.
It is also worth noting that hurricane insurance may or may not include flood insurance. So, you need to get separate coverage for the same. Nevertheless, you'd be able to file for the following damage in regular policy:
● Roof Lifting or other damages
● Water or moisture damages
● Siding damages
● Projectile damages
● Garage door damages
● Broken windows
● Septic tank damages
● Fire damage
● Vehicle damages
● Other property losses
How Do You File For The Claim?
Indeed, disasters can wreak havoc in your life. However, in such circumstances, staying calm and filing the insurance claim as soon as possible is best. In case there was flood damage along with the storms, you must as well apply for it.
Create a list of overall damage- regardless of how minor or significant it is. Contact your insurer or apply for the claim online.
As you may lose the necessary documents or information required to file a claim if the property is damaged, you should keep a digital copy of the necessary documents. It will come in handy during the process.
Do You Need A Lawyer To Avail The Claim?
Yes! Unlike regular insurance claims, hurricane and storm claims are challenging to attain. It is important to understand that insurance companies are here for businesses. They will try to save as much money as possible. Apart from this, they often delay or decline the claim made.
In despair, homeowners often accept the first amount without calculating the total damage or negotiating. Lawyers are well-versed with these tactics of insurance companies; thus, they offer representation for hurricane insurance claims victims to avail the rightful compensation. They have experience tackling similar insurance litigations, which guarantees you'll recover the best amount for the damage.
What Steps To Take Immediately After The Damage?
First of all, you need to ensure the safety and well-being of your family members and relocate to a safe place.
Once the situation is under control, you need to take the following steps:
Inspect your property and create a list of total damage. Document the scene so that you have evidence to support your claim.
File the claim by visiting your insurance provider's website or by connecting with a dedicated insurance agent. It would be best if you hire a lawyer at this point, as they can help you file the claim for the right amount.
Evaluate your insurance policy. The damages you can claim depends on the coverage. So, check the policy and plan for the claim accordingly. In case the policy is damaged due to the hurricane, and you don't have a digital copy, you can request for the insurance company to provide you a copy from their online portal.
Learn about the hurricane deductible. Generally, homeowner policies provide a $500 to $1,000 deductible. Of course, it depends on the procedure and the location you reside in. Nevertheless, learning about deductibles will help you make the appropriate claim. You must inform the same to your lawyer, as it will help them negotiate the claim better.
Last but not least, you must prepare for the insurance adjuster's visit. It includes providing the lost and damaged list and photos and videos to maximize the claim.
To Sum It All Up
Natural disasters can cause irreversible damage to your property and livelihood. Therefore, it would be best to be prepared in advance with the insurance. Work with a qualified and best-in-town lawyer to ensure you get the rightful compensation for all the damage you have suffered.