Standard homeowners insurance policies cover hurricane damage. Specifically, dwelling coverage pays for your expenses if a hurricane damages your home's structure (Coverage A), other structures (Coverage B) or personal property (personal property coverage).
Apart from dwelling coverage, additional living expenses coverage may pay for the cost of your temporary relocation should your house be rendered unlivable due to hurricane damage.
Most, but not all, natural disasters are covered by standard homeowners insurance. In terms of hurricane damage, most homeowners insurance policies automatically cover this peril. Nearing the start of the hurricane season, you may want to revisit your policy to make sure you are protected from any potential hurricane damage going forward.
In this article:
When Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Hurricane Damage?
Homeowners insurance will help cover the cost of repairs if your home or personal property is damaged by a hurricane. Most policies, however, do not cover water damage caused by flooding or storm surges from a hurricane. Here are a few examples of when homeowners insurance does cover hurricane damage.
- A hurricane damages the roof of your home
- Wind gusts from a hurricane destroy your garage or shed
- Your personal property is damaged as a direct result of a hurricane
Because you may be displaced due to hurricane damages, it's critical to understand your additional living expenses coverage. Meanwhile, hurricane damage is costly and often exceeds expectations, so if you want to be protected further, MoneyGeek recommends you inquire about extended dwelling coverage with expanded limits.
When Doesn’t Homeowners Insurance Cover Hurricane Damage?
If you live in a hurricane-prone area, your insurer may impose a separate and higher insurance deductible for hurricane wind damage, or your policy may exclude hurricane coverage entirely. That’s why you have to make sure you have the coverage you require and that any insurance adjustments are made well before a disaster.
Also, because homeowners insurance does not cover flood damage, you will need flood insurance to protect your house against hurricane storm surges.
How to Prevent Hurricane Damage
Avoiding potential hurricane damage altogether is a much better option than simply getting insurance coverage to protect you from damages. Even if you live in a state where hurricanes are less likely, you should still be prepared to protect yourself from their perils.
Preparing Your Home
One of the most crucial tasks you will have to complete is preparing your home to endure a hurricane. In the event of an emergency, having basic supplies in a kit on-hand is beneficial.
Make an Emergency Plan
Staying safe requires having an emergency plan in place. Identify a safe spot on the lower floors, but not the basement, and evacuate when officials say so.
Secure Your Property
Secure anything that could be blown around or torn loose on your property. Secure windows and doors, and keep valuables and gadgets away from breakable glass.
Stock Up on Basic Necessities
Make sure to stock up on any necessary items within a few days of receiving a hurricane warning. Non-perishable foods, including canned soups, dried fruits and vegetables, crackers, cereal and protein pouches, should be available.
Where to Buy Homeowners Insurance
Many insurers — such as State Farm and Hippo — offer homeowners insurance. MoneyGeek suggests shopping around and comparing quotes from various companies to find the best deal.
Homeowners insurance costs an average of $175 per month, but your actual amount will depend on the value of your personal property. To figure out how much you will need to pay for insurance, use MoneyGeek's personal property calculator.
About Mark Fitzpatrick