September 14, 2023

What to Know About Homeowners Insurance and Severe Weather

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

The United States has observed a significant rise in the occurrence of severe weather and storms in certain regions. As weather patterns change, it’s important for us to be aware of the potential risks that could affect your home.

Homeownership is one of the most significant financial and personal investments a person can make, so it’s important that you keep it safe. Just as you insure your car to prevent breaking the bank when something goes wrong, homeowners insurance helps protect your home, your possessions, and your finances if an emergency occurs.

What is Homeowners Insurance?

Homeowners insurance is a way to transfer the risk of significant damage to your home or its financial losses to an insurance company. This ensures you aren’t handling the full cost yourself. Homeowners insurance covers specific perils, although it largely depends on your state, the insurance provider and the policy type, coverage options, and deductions.

The best way to mitigate your home’s damage and cost is to ensure your homeowners insurance policies cover any major weather event that occurs in your region.

What is Covered by Homeowners Insurance and What Isn’t?

Fire, smoke, wind, hail, lightning, volcanoes, and the weight of snow, ice, or sleet are typically covered by homeowners insurance. However, it usually excludes damage from earthquakes, major floods, mudflows, landslides, and tsunamis.

As flood damage is not typically covered, experts recommend purchasing an additional policy if your home area is affected by flooding or storm surges.

CBS News released an article in August, 2023 about homeowners insurance and the increase of weather phenomena. According to Mark Friedlander, a spokesperson for the Insurance Information Institute, only 4% of U.S. homeowners have flood insurance.

A Weather Emergency Happened – Now What?

Call your insurance company right away if weather-related damage occurs. Insurance usually doesn’t cover gradual damage, so it’s important that you call soon after the incident occurred. Some companies have 24-hour phone numbers you can call in case the incident happens outside of typical business hours. When conditions are safe, they will send someone out to assess the damage.

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