May 19th, 2014
The summer is near, which means hurricane season is quickly approaching as well, leaving many homeowners in a rush to purchase protection from damage due to natural disasters. While most know that they need homeowners insurance coverage to protect their finances in the event of a destructive force, some don't know how to fully protect themselves or think they don't need additional insurance coverage.
Having the right amount of insurance and being covered for unforeseen situations is important for all homeowners, but especially for those who are considered to be at high risk for potential storms. Dealing with severe weather and damage to your home can be stressful enough, which is why CoverHound is here to tell you how you can be better prepared in the event of a natural disaster.
Following destructive storms like Hurricane Katrina, more homeowners in the gulf states were aware of what they needed in their flood insurance policies. In regions close to or below sea level, flood insurance is an essential part of any homeowners policy, but it does not come as part of a typical policy. Instead, homeowners need to seek out this coverage separately. Though it may be an additional cost, the cost of not having coverage can be far greater.
Keep a record of your valuables
When you sign up for an insurance policy, you want to ensure that you get enough coverage to pay for any damage or destruction that may occur to your home as well as the cost of your belongings. This includes your valuables. For example, if your home and all your belongings inside were to be lost after a storm, having a record that documents what you own - especially your valuables - will be important when it comes time to file a claim to replace your items. Beyond the items in your home, you may also want to document anything that you keep in the garage or an outdoor shed. This idea is also important for those with a renters insurance policy.
Back up your records
When it comes to important records such as your family history or medical documents, they need to be kept in a secure place. Unfortunately, when a hurricane hits, the organized box you had been using to keep these files in one place is no longer safe. Paper documents can easily be ruined by water damage from a flood or other storm, which means you need another method to keep these secure and accessible when you need them.
You can backup your files - including medical and tax records - electronically to keep them safe. This will provide you with an electronic copy of your documents any time you need them and will safeguard them from the potential loss of a storm. Beyond your most important records, you can make electronic versions of family photographs, your marriage license and stock certificates if necessary.
Keep an emergency fund
No one expects disaster to strike, but when a destructive tornado comes knocking at your door, you will want to have some emergency funds to fall back on. While your homeowners insurance will likely cover the cost of damages in addition to extra living expenses, having a safety net of your own can bring peace of mind and financial stability while going through the claims process.