| Hurricane Guide
Take time to do an insurance checkup
Insurance companies typically will not issue new homeowners coverage in the days or hours before a storm comes ashore. Take the time to check your policy and talk with your agent before a storm threatens, to ensure that you have the proper coverage in place.
Standard homeowner's policies do not cover
flood damage. If you live in a flood-prone area, contact your insurance agent about flood insurance.
Many homeowners who live in flood-prone areas qualify for the
National Flood Insurance Program. Your insurance agent will have information about this program. There is a 30-day waiting period between the time you purchase the insurance and the time it takes effect.
Be sure your coverage reflects the current value of your property. It may cost more to rebuild your home today than when you purchased your policy.
Be sure your coverage reflects the value of the contents in your home. Consider buying special coverage for any unusual or especially valuable items, such as jewelry, antiques or art.
Know the difference between "actual cash value" and "replacement cost." A quick example: The "actual cash value" of an 8-year-old television set might be $100, while the "replacement cost" would be what it would cost you to buy a new one today, say $300. You often have the option of purchasing both types of policies. Talk with your agent about which is best for you.
Get enough insurance to rebuild your home and to replace all of your personal belongings. If you have made a major alteration or improvement to your home, be sure to update your insurance. The same goes for major purchases such as electronic equipment.
Find out how much coverage you have for “Additional Living Expenses.” If your home is destroyed by an insured disaster, such as a hurricane, this would be for additional costs, such as hotel costs, while your home is being repaired. If you rent out part of your home, it would also replace lost income for the time you would not be able to collect rent. Many policies provide coverage for 20 percent of the amount of insurance you have on your house and may be for a specified time period. Additional coverage is generally available for an extra premium
Know your deductible. Many homeowner's policies are written with a different, higher deductible for windstorm damage than for other catastrophes. Make sure you know what the deductible would be if your home were damaged in a hurricane.