Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Windstorms?
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Depending on where you live, you may have already witnessed how destructive a powerful windstorm can be to your home. Because you like to be safe and protect your investments, you probably have your home covered by a homeowners insurance policy. But, does it protect against damage from windstorm? The answer is… it depends.
Is damage from a windstorm covered by standard home insurance?
The good news is that standard homeowners insurance policies usually cover these kinds of perils, which means that you can rest easy if a windstorm is announced near your home. Not only that, but if the damage to your house is enough to reach the inside of it, your standard personal property coverage should kick in as well.
But, there may be some exceptions
Depending on the state in which you live, even if you are covered against windstorm damage, your insurance company may require a separate deductible for this type of damage, which is usually higher than the standard one. This deductible can be a percentage of the insured value of your home or a fixed amount.
The states currently requiring that additional deductible are:
- New York
- New Jersey
- North Carolina
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
Are hurricanes and tornados included?
While you won’t find tornados or hurricanes being named explicitly as covered perils in an insurance policy, damage caused by these should be covered under wind damage.
However, some insurance companies will exclude this coverage in areas that are high risk, such as coastal towns. So, if you live in an area where hurricanes are a common occurrence or a big threat, make sure to double-check your insurance policy coverage.
Additionally, standard insurance policies do not cover flood damage. So, if a hurricane in your areas causes flooding, your insurer won’t pay for these types of damages. People who live in high-risk areas for hurricanes and flooding (like Florida) will need to purchase a separate flood insurance policy to have a thorough protection for their homes.
What if your insurer doesn’t cover windstorm damage?
If you live in a high-risk area and your insurer doesn’t cover windstorm damage under a standard policy, you may still have some options. First, your insurer might still allow you to add this extra protection as an endorsement (meaning an add-on that will cost you extra). If that isn’t an option, you may be able to buy a separate windstorm policy to cover this gap. This option usually comes about in high-risk states where insurance companies shy away from including this in their policies.