[news] => after-the-storm-five-important-things-every-homeowner-should-know
    [cat] => insurance-insights

After the Storm: Five Important Things Every Homeowner Should Know


It’s the height of hurricane season in many parts of the country, and hopefully you’re pretty good at securing your home and property before a big storm hits. But even with your best efforts, nature is an unrelenting force — according to The Washington Post, 1 in 10 homes in the U.S. were impacted by weather disasters in 2022, causing an estimated $56.9 billion in damage.


No matter how well you prepare, there’s always a chance that your home and property will be one of those damaged by a severe weather event. Here are five important things you should do immediately after a storm.


1.    Proceed with caution. If your home is in an area devastated by a big storm, remember that the crisis isn’t necessarily over once the skies clear. Downed power lines combined with standing water are extremely dangerous and can lead to severe injury and death. Don’t walk around in the dark when you can’t see possible hazards, and pay attention to your local TV news or radio station for information about power restoration and repairs in your area. Floods can impact drinking water safety, so listen for “boil water” alerts and use bottled water for drinking and brushing your teeth until you can confirm that the water from your tap is safe to consume.


2.    Survey the damage. When it’s safe and visibility is good, check your property by walking around the perimeter of your yard. You’re looking for fallen trees or branches, downed lines, and damage to your roof, exterior walls, and landscaping. Shutters may have flown loose or hail could have damaged outdoor structures. Be sure to also check inside for roof damage visible in the attic, broken windows from flying debris, or standing water in your basement. It’s extremely important, however, not to wade through standing water — you never know if an electric current is flowing through it.


3.    Document everything. Before you start cleaning up, photograph or video any damage your house or possessions have sustained as a result of the storm — even outdoor structures and landscaping. This can help when you file an insurance claim. You may have to call in a professional to assess things like hail damage to your roof; before you do, it’s a good idea to contact your agent to ensure you’re using an approved company to assess your damage.


4.    Take steps to mitigate further damage. For example, if you have a broken window, you can put a tarp or board over it to prevent further water damage until it can be properly repaired. But don’t do anything that puts you in a dangerous situation, like climbing on a wet roof. Keep a record of damage mitigation actions you’ve taken to help support any claims.


5.    Be a good neighbor. Don’t forget to check on the elderly couple that lives next door or the newlyweds who just bought their first house. They might need some help after the storm, and sometimes one side of the street has power while the other side does not. Also pay attention to road closures and local information about the worst-hit areas. Don’t be a disaster tourist — stay off the roads to make it easier for emergency vehicles and storm cleanup crews to do their work.


Your local We Insure agent is there to help you recover after severe weather. Add calling them to your post-storm checklist. They’ll help you review your policy, file claims, and answer any questions you may have about storm-related coverage. And if you’re fortunate enough to have avoided storm damage so far, schedule a policy review with your local agent to make sure you have the necessary coverage in place.



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            [franchise_id] => 297
            [category_title] => Insurance Insights
            [slug] => insurance-insights
            [admin_desc] => Customer blog
            [date_added] => 2023-06-06 18:01:17

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The information contained in this page is provided for general informational purposes only and may not be applicable to all situations. We Insure makes no guarantees of results from the use of this information.