In the recent weeks, we have had two (2) major hurricanes come through and near Florida; Harvey, of course, striking and destroying a good part of the eastern side of Texas and then Irma causing havoc throughout the State of Florida. Both of these storms resulted in hurricane damage, wind and destroyed trees and various other things, however, they also caused increased water by way of rain. Unfortunately, many people do not have flood insurance. Very often people believe that their homeowner’s insurance policy will cover flood. It does not. Flood insurance in this area is a necessary. It is not that expensive and can be purchased through any agent. The agents that you are using can at least direct you to where you would be able to purchase it. People are unpleasantly surprised when their insurance adjuster comes to the house and says, “I cover everything from the flood line up, but from the flood line down, that’s a different coverage”.
One should also check their policy for what is actually covered in the event of a storm, including the deductibles that may be on the policy. The deductibles can be higher or lower, depending on how much coverage one wants. A second suggestion is that before the approach of any major storm, inasmuch as most telephones or smartphones now have cameras, take pictures of everything in the house. If you have flood insurance, that will certainly make a difference in your recovery as to what may be covered.
While we are on the subject of insurance coverage, many people have pet dogs or cats, or other creatures. The family dog is not necessarily covered under your insurance policy. That has to have a special rider to cover the dog in case the dog causes an injury to some person. Now that injury does not necessarily have to be in the house. If you are walking your dog and it is covered under your homeowner’s policy by way of this rider and the dog decides to get frisky with neighbor or the neighbor’s dog, it should be covered. We would suggest that you check your policy if you have a dog, to see whether that rider is there. Many believe Florida is a homestead state, that their exposure is non-existent. That is absolutely incorrect. If one has assets, a judgment can be levied against them. Moreover, even though the property may be homestead, one may not be able to foreclose on it, but that judgment is recorded and could tie it up or prevent a sale until it is satisfied.
Harvey and Irma are very much like an unpleasant, obnoxious couple, but because of them we learn a lesson.