‘Review Your Property Insurance’: SCC reminds Virginians to prepare now head of a natural disaster

Virginia News

Damage and debris from flooding is near the Ahr River, including in the spa complex, Sunday, July 18, 2021, in Bad Neuenahr, Germany. (Thomas Frey/dpa via AP)

RICHMOND, Va. (WFXR) – With the 2021 Atlantic hurricane season going strong, the State Corporation Commission’s (SCC) Bureau of Insurance is reminding Virginians that we are coming into the peak of hurricane season which is normally the most dangerous and most active time of year for tropical storm activity, as well as the most likely time for property damage that these storms may cause.

If you have not already reviewed your property insurance, they are urging Virginians to do so now as the hurricane season is well underway.

Whether you’re a homeowner, renter or a business, you can protect yourself financially by making sure you have the coverage you need before a disaster moves in.

Hurricane season, in the Atlantic basin, runs from June 1 through Nov. 30 and locations like central and southwest Virginia can see high winds, heavy rain and flooding that normally accompanies tropical systems.

You may have a difficult time increasing your insurance coverage once a storm develops and until the threat has passed, so they say to review your coverage now and make any necessary changes.

Most homeowners, renters and commercial insurance policies do not cover losses due to flooding, so be sure to discuss flood coverage with your insurance provider or visit the National Flood Insurance Program’s website by clicking here to learn more about protecting your home or business from potential flood damage. There is normally a 30-day waiting period for a new flood insurance policy to take effect.

The Bureau is also encouraging Virginians to create a detailed home inventory complete with photos, videos and serial numbers of your belongings.

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ (NAIC) free smartphone app can help with this process.

If your property does sustain damage from a storm, contact your insurance agent or company as soon as possible to begin the process

Policyholders should consider the following questions related to potential hurricane damage when reviewing their policies:

  • Does your homeowners policy contain a special deductible for wind or hurricane losses? These deductibles are applied separately from any other deductible on a homeowners policy and may be written as a flat amount, such as $1,000, or applied to a loss as a percentage of the insurance coverage on the dwelling.
     
  • Does your homeowners policy provide coverage for such things as sewer backup? Most homeowners policies do not provide coverage for sewer backup, but policyholders may purchase additional coverage for this.
     
  • Are vehicles covered in the event of a hurricane or windstorm? If you have other-than-collision (or comprehensive) coverage for your vehicle under your automobile policy, your vehicles generally will be covered for flood and wind damage.

To learn more, contact the Bureau of Insurance Property and Casualty Division at 1-877-310-6560. Find consumer guides for homeowners and commercial property owners by clicking here.

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