Insurance companies prohibit buyers from purchasing new homeowners’ insurance policies or increasing the limits on their existing policy, if a natural disaster such as a tropical storm or hurricane is imminent. If a hurricane watch is issued 24 to 48 hours before the hurricane is expected to make landfall, buying extra insurance or new insurance for your home may be impossible. Hurricane season in Florida begins June 1st and ends on November 30th.
Extra Insurance During Hurricane Season
One insurance policy is usually not enough to cover all the types of damage that can happen in your home after a hurricane. You may need to purchase insurance that provides coverage in case there is wind or flood damage, as well. It is a good idea to purchase the insurance you need to protect your home in advance of the hurricane season. Flood insurance, which is issued by the federal government’s National Flood Insurance Program, usually institutes a 30-day waiting period on any new policy they issue.
Moratoriums for New Policies
Moratoriums, also known as binding prohibitions, are issued by insurance companies for certain high-risk areas. During hurricane season, insurance companies wait until 24 to 48 hours before the impact to issue a moratorium on buying new policies. Moratoriums can remain in effect until 24 to 78 hours after the hurricane has passed.
What To Do After the Storm Is Over
If your home sustained damage from a hurricane or tropical storm, there are some actions you can take once the storm is over, including:
- Documenting the damage: Before beginning to put your home back together, take photographs or a video of your home to illustrate the extent of the damage. It can be helpful to take before-and-after pictures or videos to better connect the damages to the disaster, as well.
- Documenting your expenses: Document and keep receipts of any expenses you incurred before, during, and after the hurricane.
- Updating your insurance coverage: This may be a good time to look at the insurance coverage you have and determine if it was enough to cover all your losses. If not, purchase extra insurance before the next hurricane watch or warning is issued later in the season, to make sure your home is protected.
Review Your Policies Carefully
As part of the mortgage loan process in Florida, your mortgage lender may require you to have flood and wind damage insurance on the property that is securing the loan, especially if your home is in a flood zone. These types of insurance will cover damage to your property after a hurricane has hit since there is no such thing as ‘hurricane’ insurance. This means you might already have the supplemental insurance you need.
When To Purchase More Insurance
Timing is everything when it comes to having the right insurance to cover your property in the event of a hurricane. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predicts that the hurricane season in 2019 will produce two to four major hurricanes resulting in serious damage. They also predict up to 15 named storms that may also cause significant damage. Scientists have found that global warming is making hurricanes more dangerous every year, so making sure you have the right coverage for your property before a hurricane hits is advised.
If you live in Florida, you will experience hurricanes and tropical storms that are dangerous and destructive. The best defense against catastrophic hurricane damage is to have comprehensive coverage that protects you against floods, wind, and other damage from hurricanes. Don’t wait until disaster strikes.
Talk to a Property Claims Lawyer to Learn More
If your home was damaged by a hurricane or other natural disaster and your insurance company has denied or undervalued your property claim, we may be able to help. Call the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine today at 1-800-747-3733 for a free consultation. We can review your insurance policy and advise you about your options.