The major hurricanes of 2004 and 2005 changed the need for hurricane and wind insurance coverage.
Before these disasters, many businesses were unprepared and uneducated on their insurance policies and what hurricane property damage would be covered after the fact. The time to determine what your policy covers is not after a natural disaster.
Here are some helpful tips to consider so you come out on top:
Removing debris can be costly after a natural disaster like a hurricane. Usually, policies offer an additional 5%-25% over the policy limit to cover this removal. Find out the language of your policy before you need it so you can be prepared and not scrambling after the fact.
Due to the fact that hurricane property damage can be extensively damaging to a property due to the wind and normally comes with other kinds of damage, the deductible works a little differently than a normal insurance deductible. Instead of a dollar amount, it is usually based off the overall policy limit. Normally, anywhere from 2%-5% of the policy limit is a normal windstorm deductible amount. Something important to note is that property owners may have the opportunity to purchase a buy-back deductible. In this case, the percentage amount would no longer be the amount owed, instead, you would pay the buy-back premium, which will likely be less than the percentage amount.
Something else that comes along with an extensively damaging disaster is loss of business. Rebuilding can take months, so business interruption can be detrimental to a business’s success. That is why it is so important to have business interruption coverage. Business owners can choose a fixed amount, or, be paid based on the amount of time they are out of business. This money can be used to continue paying employees and make up for the loss of profits you would have been making.
In the case of a natural disaster, it is often too unsafe to return to your business or home right away. This period of time post-storm can be anywhere from days to weeks. In this case, most policies have a civil authority clause that would then benefit the business owner. If you are not allowed back to your business for over 72 hours, coverage will likely be awarded to you. Be sure to check your policy to see the specifics of your coverage.
As the frequency of hurricanes and disastrous storms increases, make sure your business has adequate coverage and know the details of your policy so that you can recover in the event of an emergency.
Have questions about your property insurance claim? Feel free to contact Stark Loss for more information about how a Public Adjuster can help.