What to do af­ter in­cur­ring storm dam­age

The Review - - CLASSIFIEDS -

The 2017 hur­ri­cane sea­son proved es­pe­cially dev­as­tat­ing for mil­lions of peo­ple in both Texas and Florida. Upon mak­ing land­fall in Texas in late Au­gust, Hur­ri­cane Har­vey be­came the first Cat­e­gory 3 or higher hur­ri­cane in the United States since Hur­ri­cane Wilma in 2005. In its wake, Har­vey left dam­age that Texas gov­er­nor Greg Ab­bott es­ti­mated could cost as much as $180 bil­lion to re­pair. Just a cou­ple of weeks af­ter Hur­ri­cane Har­vey touched down, Hur­ri­cane Irma hit Florida as a Cat­e­gory 4 storm, knock­ing out power to nearly seven mil­lion peo­ple. Se­vere storms like hur­ri­canes do not dis­crim­i­nate, and when such storms fi­nally dis­si­pate, peo­ple from all walks of life are left to deal with the often dev­as­tat­ing con­se­quences. Prop­erty dam­age is one such con­se­quence, and the fol­low­ing are some things peo­ple can do in the af­ter­math of storms that caused dam­age to their prop­erty. • Con­tact your in­sur­ance provider. Not all dam­age re­sult­ing from storms will nec­es­sar­ily be cov­ered by in­sur­ance poli­cies, but it’s still im­per­a­tive that peo­ple con­tact their in­sur­ance com­pa­nies as soon as pos­si­ble af­ter their homes or ve­hi­cles have been dam­aged. Agents can help pol­icy hold­ers learn if their poli­cies cover the dam­age done to their prop­erty and to what ex­tent their cov­er­age will help them re­cover. Many peo­ple will likely be mak­ing sim­i­lar calls, so pol­icy hold­ers should try to be as pa­tient as pos­si­ble.

HARD­WOOD FLOOR­ING • Doc­u­ment the dam­age. Peo­ple whose prop­erty has been dam­aged should use their smart­phones and cam­eras to doc­u­ment the dam­age as ex­ten­sively as pos­si­ble. Take pho­tos from var­i­ous an­gles be­fore you be­gin clean­ing up. Providers may re­quire vis­ual ev­i­dence of the dam­age be­fore they be­gin pro­cess­ing your claim, so ask about those re­quire­ments when contacting your in­sur­ance agent. • Avoid downed power lines. In ad­di­tion to pro­tect­ing the in­vest­ments you have made in your prop­erty and your pos­ses­sions, it’s im­por­tant to re­mem­ber to pro­tect your­self. Avoid downed power lines, re­port­ing any to your lo­cal power com­pany as soon as you see them. • Let the pro­fes­sion­als do the work. It can be tempt­ing for home­own­ers to try to do some electrical work around their homes af­ter their homes have been dam­aged by storms. Elec­tri­cians are likely busy and might not be able to as­sess or re­pair dam­age for days, if not weeks. But it’s still best to wait and al­low pro­fes­sion­als to do the work. Ex­pe­ri­enced pro­fes­sion­als rec­og­nize po­ten­tially harm­ful, if not deadly, is­sues that may be lurk­ing be­neath the dam­age, so it’s al­ways best to leave the work to pri­vate elec­tri­cians or lo­cal power com­pany work crews. • Re­visit in­sur­ance poli­cies. Af­ter suf­fer­ing dam­age to their homes or ve­hi­cles, men and women may ben­e­fit by re­vis­it­ing their cov­er­age and in­creas­ing that cov­er­age in an­tic­i­pa­tion of fu­ture dis­as­ters. Storm dam­age can turn in­di­vid­u­als’ lives up­side down. But re­main­ing calm and work­ing in har­mony with in­sur­ance agen­cies and power com­pa­nies can help storm vic­tims re­cover quickly.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.