Ahead of Hurricane Irma’s potential impact, Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis is stressing the importance of understanding insurance coverage. As Floridians finalize their preparations, they are encouraged to include copies of their insurance policies in their family disaster kits and to call Florida’s Insurance Helpline (1-877-693-5236) for help with any insurance-related questions or concerns.
“Hurricane Irma is a large and dangerous storm, capable of creating widespread damage, and it is crucial for consumers to understand their insurance coverage as they prepare their homes for Irma’s possible impact,” said CFO Patronis. “Insurance is a complicated issue, and it’s easily misunderstood. I encourage Floridians to call 1-877-693-5236 with all of their insurance questions – our team is standing by to take their calls.”
If possible, Floridians should complete the following before the storm:
- Update your inventory – Take photos or video of high-value belongings, gather receipts and write down purchase dates (if known) and serial numbers.
- Minimize losses – IF it is safe to do so, take simple steps to secure your home or property. Cover your windows with hurricane shutters or plywood to guard against flying objects, move vehicles into carports or garages, carry in grills and outdoor furniture that may become flying objects.
- Follow – Follow your insurance company on social media for important storm-related information. Also, save your insurance company’s or agent’s phone number for ease of filing future claims.
Most homeowner’s insurance policies have a separate hurricane deductible of two to five percent of a home’s insured value. If a home is damaged due to a hurricane, homeowners will be responsible for this deductible, which may be higher than their normal deductible amount. While every insurance policy is different, as a general rule, homeowner’s policies do not cover flood damage. Damage caused to a car by wind, falling trees, flood, etc. is covered under auto insurance, if the consumer carries comprehensive auto coverage.