Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Hurricane Damage?

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Hurricane Damage?

With homeowners insurance, you're protected from the perils listed (a hazard, i.e., fire, lightning, theft) in your policy, including damage from hurricane winds and wind-driven rain. However, homeowners insurance does not cover the storm surge and catastrophic flood damage following a hurricane.

If your home is in a high hurricane risk area, your insurance company may charge you a separate deductible for hurricanes. Most insurers in Atlantic coast states require a separate named storm or hurricane deductible if a tropical storm is named or declared by the National Weather Service. 

If you choose to omit the hurricane deductible from your policy, your insurance company will not reimburse you for property damage caused by hurricane winds.

Hurricane Deductible

• Most homeowners insurance perils are covered by dollar amount deductibles – a fixed amount ($500) that you pay out of pocket to your insurer during a claim before they reimburse you.
• You can find the deductible on your policy declaration page.
• Almost every state on the Atlantic coast allows insurers to charge special deductibles for hurricane damage.
• The following states where insurers require hurricane deductibles are AL, CT, DE, DC, FL, GA, HI, LA, ME, MA, MS, NJ, NY, NC, PA, RI, SC, TX, and VA.

How Much Coverage Do You need?

Before hurricane season, make sure your six basic protections have updated coverage amounts.

Pay special attention to the following areas:
• Dwelling coverage
• Personal property
• Additional living/loss of use coverage
Additional coverage considerations:
• Flood
• Debris removal
• Water backup coverage

Hurricane Moratorium

An insurance moratorium is a period of time before a windstorm or natural disaster where new policies cannot be written and updates to existing policies can't be made. For example, most carriers dictate that once the NOAA has issued a hurricane watch or warning, coverage cannot be written until a certain number of hours after the watch/warning expires.

Hurricane Season Tips

• Trim trees/branches
• Secure outdoor furniture
• Install storm shutters
• Seal any opening into your homes
• Clean gutters/direct downspouts that lead water away from your house
• If you can safely evacuate prior to the storm, please do so
• Call non-emergency police numbers to let people know where you are if you cannot get ahold of anyone you know

Need Help With an Insurance Quote 

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**Coverages vary by state / carrier