Tornadoes, hurricanes and gale force winds are some of the most common types of damage that occurs to homes across the United States. No area is safe from the threat of high winds that may tear off roofing, siding and cause damage to other structures on the property.
The question for many homeowners is whether their insurance will cover the damage caused by such a common source. The answer is that most homeowners’ policies will provide recompense to the damage caused by “Acts of God” such as tornadoes, hurricanes, and high winds.
How the Coverage Works
The first step is to look over your home insurance policy to see what it does and does not cover.You may be surprised that wind damage is present as it is with most homeowner’s policies. However, there may be exceptions to your policy that will require calling your insurance company to see what type of coverage they offer.
Document the Damage: You will need to take photos of the damage that was caused by the high winds.The damage may range from having a few shingles blown off the home to its destruction after getting hit with a tornado or hurricane. Take photos from the front and back, then document the specific damage that your home received due to the winds.
As a reminder, most homeowner’s insurance does not cover flood damage. This means that damage which was primarily caused by a flood and not the winds will normally not be covered in the policy. You’ll need to document only the damage that was caused primarily by the windstorm.
Get Estimates: The next step is getting estimates from your local restoration companies or businesses that offer repairs for siding, roofing, and similar types of damage. It is important that you move quickly, especially if you have roof damage so it can be repaired before water can get into your attic. By that point, the damage will only escalate as the water will damage the structure of the home and allow for mold and mildew to form which causes even more damage.
File the Claim: Once you have gathered all the pertinent information, you can file a proper claim. You may have a claims adjuster visit your property to verify the damage that was caused. However, if you have taken the proper steps, your claim will be honored and the repairs to your home can begin.
Keep in mind that the damage from wind sources applies to your home and detached structures on your property, such as sheds where you may store your garden or lawn care equipment. It may even extend to personal property that was damaged or lost during the storm as well.
It helps if you keep a list of valuable items that are worth more than $500 each so you can use it as a reference for filing claims to repair or replace them if they were damaged by high winds. Be sure to talk to your insurance agent so you can file your claim properly and get approval as soon as possible.