Policyholder Preparations for an Active 2021 Hurricane Season
Hurricane season is here. The Weather Channel’s 2021 Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook predicts another above-average season, meaning policyholders must take the time to ensure they are adequately prepared. Preparation extends to both safeguarding your home and addressing any coverage gaps or underinsurance issues with your policy.
The 2021 outlook is predicting eighteen total named storms, with eight becoming hurricanes and three being Category 3 or higher. Last year’s historic hurricane season saw thirty named storms, twelve of which made landfall in the continental U.S.
Thirteen of these storms became hurricanes and six were considered major hurricanes. 2020’s hurricane season set another record for nine named storms between May and July. If last year’s season is any indication of what can happen this year, policyholders need to start preparing as soon as possible.
Damage from storm surges is common with hurricanes, but most policyholders are unaware that their standard homeowners insurance does not cover damage from flooding. This is why it is recommended to obtain supplemental flood insurance to ensure full coverage. Commercial policyholders should obtain loss of income coverage in case their business is temporarily shut down due to damage from a hurricane. Residential policyholders can secure additional living expense coverage to assist with costs while their home is being rebuilt.
Another element for policyholders to consider is their policy limits. Recent increases in lumber and construction costs may require higher policy limits. You can speak with your insurance agent about increasing your policy limit to better protect yourself in the event your home needs repairs or rebuilding. The recent COVID-19 pandemic has also led to delays in labor, making additional living expense coverage even more vital in case your home cannot be repaired for an extended period.
We have created several assets geared towards assisting policyholders prepare for hurricane season. For residential policyholders, we have a Hurricane Checklist with tips on safeguarding your home and reviewing your insurance policy. We have also created a Condominium Hurricane Preparedness Guide for multi-family properties.
Merlin Law Group is here to assist with any hurricane damage claims. Please do not hesitate to reach out to one of our many experienced attorneys with questions regarding your hurricane damage claim.