Natural Disaster Coverage for Homeowners

Have you reviewed your homeowner’s insurance policy to know what is covered? This article discusses natural disaster coverage for homeowners.
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Staff Writer, @DooleyNotedLaw

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Homeowners insurance is for situations where damage is likely too expensive to cover out-of-pocket. However, a standard homeowners insurance policy will only cover problems such as theft or fire damage. Natural disaster coverage for homeowners often requires additional coverage. This article discusses natural disaster coverage for homeowners, so you can determine the right coverage for your home to protect yourself from these events. 

Natural Disaster Coverage for Homeowners: Determine Your Risk Factor

Natural disasters can cause much damage to your property, but do you know the risk factor associated with your area?

When purchasing a home, it is crucial to consider the risk of natural disasters. These risks include floods, hurricanes, tornados, hail, earthquakes, volcanoes, lightning strikes, snow and ice, wildfires, landslides, mudslides, and sinkholes.

Most homeowners policies do not cover natural disasters. Therefore, if you live in a high-risk area, you can buy a supplemental policy that will cover natural disasters. This policy will cost more because of the increased risk.

Below, we cover common natural disaster coverage for Texas homeowners.

Common Natural Disaster Coverage for Homeowners in Texas 

In Texas, you will likely want to consider at least three supplemental homeowners insurance policies to protect your property from natural disasters. Standard homeowners insurance policies generally do not cover these situations, so you need a separate policy for each. Texas homeowners should have insurance policies covering wind, floods, and hail. Please do not wait until it is too late to get this coverage. If you live in an area prone to natural disasters, it is essential to have all three of these types of coverage.

Wind Insurance

In certain places, wind insurance covers many wind-related natural disasters. In Texas, it’s common for homeowners to purchase separate wind policies for tornadoes and hurricanes. If you have a wind policy, check to make sure your policy’s wind coverage includes tornados and hurricanes or you may want to look into an additional policy. It’s important to have wind insurance because these disasters can cause a lot of damage to your home.

Flood Insurance

If your home is at risk of flooding, it’s essential to have a flood policy. A standard home insurance policy doesn’t include this type of coverage. Flood policies can help protect your home and belongings after a flood.

The FEMA manages the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). This program is available to the public through more than 50 insurance companies. Floods can happen anywhere. Further, even just one inch of floodwater can cause up to $25,000.

If you have a home insurance policy, contact your agent or company to see if you need to purchase a separate flood policy.

Hail Insurance

Hail is a common natural disaster in Texas. Hailstones the size of golf balls can cause significant damage to your home, especially to your roof. If you live in an area where hail hits often, it’s essential to know the difference between a roof that needs repairs and a replacement. If your roof is more than 20 years old and hail damages it, you may need to replace it.

Many homeowners don’t realize that their insurance policy doesn’t generally cover hail damage. You must purchase supplemental homeowners insurance or an endorsement to your policy to cover this type of incident.

What to do if You Don’t Have Natural Disaster Insurance for Homeowners

If you only have standard homeowners insurance and your house is damaged by a natural disaster, you may need to pay for the repairs yourself. However, your policy may at least cover the cost of living in a hotel, if your home is uninhabitable. If your personal belongings are damaged, you might be able to receive compensation. However, this depends on what your insurance policy covers.

If a natural disaster happens, use your home insurance first. But, if your home insurance doesn’t cover the full extent of the damages, you can apply for help from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) or the Small Business Administration (SBA).

Contacting Your Insurance Company and Making Repairs

It is essential to understand your homeowner’s insurance policy. Contact your insurance company before a natural disaster hits, if you have questions. That way, you will know what is covered and what is not. If you wait until after you have damage, you may not be able to get the coverage you need.

Home insurance policies vary depending on the company. For example, some companies might cover damage from storms, but not floods. Other companies might cover damage from floods, but not storms. Therefore, read your policy carefully to see what is not covered.

If you’re not sure what kind of coverage you have, contact your insurance company and ask them to explain it to you.

Further, if a natural disaster damages your property, you should wait to make permanent repairs. Wait until you have received an accurate quote from your insurance company. Additionally, you need to document the damage before repairing it. You can do this by taking photos or videos of the damage or hiring a professional to assess the damage.

Why hire an Insurance Dispute Lawyer in Texas?

Handling your home insurance claim can be a complicated process. That’s why it’s always a good idea to have an attorney on your side. For example, if your insurance company denies your claim or issues a low settlement offer, you might need to take legal action. An insurance dispute lawyer in Texas will help you get evidence and build a strong case. Further, they will also negotiate with your insurance company on your behalf.

Dooley Noted has experience helping people get compensation after natural disasters. We can help you get the money you deserve from your insurance company. Don’t try to deal with this alone. Contact us today for a free consultation.

The contents of this post, and the posting and viewing of the information on this post, should not be construed as, and should not be relied upon for, legal advice in any particular circumstance or fact situation. An attorney should be contacted for advice on specific legal issues.

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