Preparing Your Policies for Severe Weather

When severe weather strikes, the first thing on your mind should be the safety of the people you love. And when forces of nature threaten your home and the stuff you own, you shouldn’t be worried — because you’ve already prepared your insurance policies for any damage that might occur. Here are some steps you can take, long before a storm hits, to protect your property.

Take Inventory of Your Stuff

Whether a particular item of yours has sentimental or financial value, it’s worth considering insuring. Take photos of your things and save them to a computer, flash drive or somewhere you can easily access them, electronically or physically. Include items that might be in other buildings on your property, like a shed or a garage. You can also take inventory of your belongings using this helpful checklist.

In order to make certain that your personal items and the buildings they’re in are properly protected, speak with your insurance agent. Even if you don’t own your home, you can still protect what’s inside of it with American Family renters insurance. While you won’t need coverage to protect the building you live in, you can cover the costs of replacing your treasured possessions that make your rental space your home.

Review Your Homeowners Insurance

Your home is most likely the most expensive thing you own, so make sure you have insured it for what it would cost to rebuild. If your home would need to be completely rebuilt, you’d probably want it to be the same size and have the same features. If it’s not properly insured, you could be risking taking on the financial and emotional toll of having to rebuild a lesser home.

Know What You’re Covered For

Fully understanding your insurance policies can reduce your stress before, during and after a storm. No one wants to play the hectic mind game of “am I covered?”, so contact your agent, get copies of your policies, and walk through your coverages. You can get basic information on types of weather-related coverage here, but your agent can give you pinpoint specifics on your personal coverages.

Rental car reimbursement coverage. Preparing for a severe weather event doesn’t just include your homeowners policy — your vehicle could be damaged, too. And if it is, you might need a car to get your kids to school and get you to work while it’s in the shop. Ask your American Family agent about rental car reimbursement coverage so you don’t get stuck with a huge rental car bill while your car is out of commission.

Power outages. If the power goes out, you could be stuck with spoiled food in your refrigerator. This is built into your homeowners coverage and will help you re-fill your fridge when the power comes back on.

Living expenses. In more serious cases, you might not be able to live in your home while it’s undergoing repairs. Whether you’re staying with family or in a hotel, you may be eligible to receive additional living expenses to cover the increased costs that are a result of your home being uninhabitable. Speak with your American Family Insurance agent to see where your limit stands, and if you should increase it.

Other Types of Severe Weather Coverage

Thunder, lightning and heavy winds aren’t the only types of severe weather. Many different versions of Mother Nature’s worst can cause turbulence in your life. Consider discussing the following severe weather events with your agent to see if any additional types of coverage are worth considering.

Flooding. Flood insurance is not included in your homeowner’s policy, but it can happen almost anywhere — consider looking into purchasing a flood insurance policy to make sure you’re prepared, no matter how unlikely a flood might seem.

Ice, sleet and snow. In addition to the havoc these three cold weather villains can wreak on roadways, they sometimes do damage elsewhere. Whether snow collapses a roof, or the cold freezes your pipes, potential damage from these types of incidents are covered by your homeowners policy.

Understand Your Deductible

Your deductible is the amount of money you’ll pay prior to your policy paying to fix your damages, so you’ll want to keep at least that amount handy in case something happens. Discuss the specifics with your agent so you don’t have any surprises when you make your claim.

Learn the Claim Process

The better you know the claims process, the smoother and less stressful it’ll be! The sooner you make your claim, the quicker our claims team can get on site and assess the damage, and the faster you can get your life back to normal. Talk with your agent today about properly protecting the things that matter the most to you.

Your American Family Insurance agent can help you prepare for the worst that weather brings — contact them today to make sure your policies are set to protect what matters most.

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Related Topics: Insurance Needs