Long before the Hurricane Comes:
- Shop Insurance. Some people just get flood insurance for hurricane season. However, it is generally fairly inexpensive insurance depending on where you live.
- Review your policies. Flood insurance and homeowners insurance do not provide coverage for the same things. Make sure to locate both policies and make sure coverage is sufficient periodically.
- Pay your Premiums. If your coverage lapses, claims can be denied. It sounds obvious, but it happens quite often.
- Mind your valuables. Remember Art and Jewelry and other unique items may need to be covered separately. Review your policy, as there are usually limits per category.
Days before the Hurricane Comes:
- Take photos and videos of your home and its contents. In this day and age, we all have high definition cameras in our pockets. Go room to room and document what you have, the condition of your home and the lack of damage to everything. It may be important later. We often don’t have receipts for personal property purchased over the years, so this can be powerful evidence when something is in dispute.
- Use Safes or Higher Ground. If your property is subject to flooding, move your personal property to a higher floor or a waterproof safe, if possible. If nothing else, get computers and important documents as high as possible. Bear in mind the attic isn’t always safe as leaks and roof damage is also common. Flood insurance limits (or sometimes excludes) coverage for personal property located on the lowest level of a home or which wasn’t secured.
- Keep Insurance Information Separate. If your home is a total loss, you might lose your insurance information, too. Have information handy and be prepared to call in a claim to the appropriate insurance company or agent. Realize they will have a lot of claims. The sooner you get in line for a claim, the sooner you will have your damage assessed.
LAWS OF THE STORM:
- Hazard lights, should I drive with them on in a storm?
- Does the PETS Act Prevent a Hotel From Refusing Animals in a Storm?
- Can gas or food prices go up after a tropical storm or hurricane?
- Evacuation Orders, Curfews and the Law
- Insurance Issues: Protect Yourself from Hurricane Losses