It is storm season in Texas, again. We experience just about every known weather catastrophe known to man short of major earthquakes (crosses fingers). We’ve been through dust storms, flooding, hail storms, hurricanes, ice storms, tornadoes, and wildfires, and I’m here to tell ya that was one hell of a week.
You may not know when a catastrophe is going to strike but there are two things you can count on when it does:
- Property is going to be damaged
- The scam artist/crooks are going to crawl out of the woodwork to take advantage of you
Texas homeowners also know they can count on their insurance company to help restore, repair or replace their damaged property. But guess what, you can also count on Inside Out Home Improvement, your storm damage repair specialist, to be there to help you get through the repair process and trust that your home will be properly restored.
To be better protected after a catastrophe here are a few steps every homeowner should take before a catastrophe strikes.
6 Steps To Take Before a Weather Catastrophe
- Review your homeowner’s insurance policyGo over your policy with your agent so you’ll understand the coverage’s you have in case your home is damaged. You’ll also need to know if you have replacement cost value (RCV) or actual cost value (ACV) coverage and what the difference is. It’s important for you to know how much your deductible is because this is your financial responsibility. You’ll want to know the exact dollar amount of your deductible so you’ll know how much your out-of-pocket expense will be when disaster hits.
- Find out if you need flood insurance
In general, a standard homeowners policy covers fire and storm damage such as wind and hail but not flood damage. Flood insurance is a separate policy that you can purchase so discuss this with your agent to see if it is recommended for your situation. Keep in mind that this policy won’t go into effect until 30 days after you purchase it so don’t procrastinate if you feel you really need it.
- Find out if hail and wind is excluded from your policy
If your home is located along the Texas coastline hail and wind may be excluded from your homeowner’s policy, however, you can purchase a hail and windstorm policy from your insurance agent through the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA). If you’re waiting for a hurricane before you make this purchase you’ll be too late because you can’t obtain it when a hurricane has entered the Gulf of Mexico.
- Ask your insurance agent about your auto policy
If you have comprehensive coverage, this is full coverage something other than collision; your vehicle is protected against fire, flooding and storm damage.
- Keep good records of your valuables
After a disaster strikes it’s hard enough to remember your own name much less trying to remember what you may have lost in the storm. That’s why you should take photographs of your valuables and keep your receipts (photograph your receipts too). You may want to do a video with commentary on your home. Go through your home room to room videotaping everything in each room and give a detailed description of all of your valuables. Once you have completed this you’ll want to store everything away from your home in a safety deposit box or another secure area.
- Protect your home inside and out
During a severe thunderstorm or windstorm outdoor furniture and even your child’s toys can become projectiles being shot at your home. To help reduce the losses to your home secure all of your outside items under cover or place them inside your house. Be sure to secure all of your windows and doors. It’s also a good idea to unplug your computer, televisions and other appliances that could be damaged in an electrical storm or power surge.
Follow these steps for your protection and to help keep you and your family safe when a storm hits. And if you find yourself needing some hail restoration or other storm related damage after a storm, contact us we work well with insurance companies so you don’t have to.
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