When big storms roll through Scottsdale, it’s important to be prepared. Logically, the best time to prepare is before the storm hits. So, we’ll talk about key ways to prepare your home for even the worst storm-related damage.
We’ll also discuss what to do should your best efforts fail to prevent storm damage, including how to work with your insurance company and hire contractors.
Steps to Prevent Storm Damage to Your Home
1. Understand what your homeowner’s policy covers.
Every insurance agency will offer different home insurance policies. Moreover, every policy a given agency offers will be different. You need to know your insurance policy back to front, including what it will and will not cover in terms of storm damage.
NOTE: Most often, insurance homeowners insurance policies cover wind-related storm damage. So, if for example, a large chunk of siding was blown off your home because of wind, this would be covered. On the other hand, storm-related flooding is hardly ever covered. Just make sure you know the ins and outs of your specific policy.
2. Understand your responsibilities when it comes to home preparation.
Depending on your location and the requirements stipulated by your insurance company, there may be steps you need to take (by contract) in order to properly prepare your home for a storm. Of course, any preparation steps you take will be in your best interest as well.
Generally speaking, it is recommended that you:
– Obtain shutters for your windows
– Secure or take in loose patio furniture, toys, bikes, etc.
– Repair fences, shutters, siding, shingles, doors, etc. that may be loose or broken
– Take care of any tree branches extending over your home.
3. Have an updated inventory of your home.
Depending on the specific homeowner’s insurance policy you have, your personal belongings may be covered if they are damaged after the storm. However, you will need to know exactly what valuable property was damaged and have evidence that the storm was the event that damaged it.
This can be achieved by taking a short video of the inside and/or outside of your home when everything is in good working order. Pictures will also work.
When Your Best Efforts Fail to Prevent Damage
Even with robust preparations and attention to detail, some of the most wicked storms can still cause damage to your house. In this case, you’ll need to know what to do to remedy the situation as quickly and effectively as possible.
1. Alert your insurance agent.
Let your insurance agent know that there’s been damage done to your home and you plan on filing a claim. They will likely send an adjuster out to your home to assess the damage, so don’t complete any repairs that aren’t immediately necessary before this time.
2. Interview contractors.
Ask your insurance agent about possible contractors in your area who can complete the repair damage. They’ll usually have recommendations.
Find a contractor who you know to be reputable. They should also be local. “Storm chasers” may come to your door, promising super low prices on fast and effective repairs. Most of the time, these are charlatans who will steal your money and not complete the work effectively or at all.
Make sure the contractor you hire has references, insurance, and a contracting license. They should also provide a written quote on repairs that your insurance company can then look over before okaying the job
The Don Neeley Agency Can Answer Your Storm Damage Questions
At The Don Neeley Agency we are here to help you. Contact us today if you have any questions relating to homeowners insurance and storm damage or if you’re looking for new homeowners insurance policy for you and your family.