Florida’s weather draws millions of people to the state every year. However, as beautiful as it is, the climate can lead to lasting damage to homes and businesses. In this article, we look at common causes of weather damage and what insurance coverage is available.
Our storm damage attorneys can help if you’re having trouble with your insurance company.
What Is Weather Damage?
Weather and storm damage are interchangeable terms that refer to destruction from weather-related events. This damage can affect the interior and exterior of your home, business, and property.
What Causes Weather Damage?
Due to Florida’s climate, we’re prone to severe and adverse weather conditions that lead to weather damage. Here in Florida, we’re likely to experience weather damage due to:
- Tropical storms
- High winds
Each of these weather conditions can directly damage your home; however, they can also indirectly cause damage. For example, tornadoes can uproot trees and drop them on your home, causing significant damage.
How Does Weather Damage Affect Your Home?
Adverse weather conditions can damage both the inside and outside of your home.
Exterior damage to your home is perhaps the easiest to see. High winds and hail can batter the roof and siding of your home, threatening the structural integrity of any buildings on your property and increasing the risk of water damage.
Hurricanes and tornadoes can lift heavy objects and relocate them – sometimes into the side of your house. High winds associated with this type of weather can also shatter windows, remove roofs, and dismantle the structure of your home.
Lightning strikes and wildfires also cause some significant external damage. Direct contact with flames heats the building materials used in your home, causing windows to shatter and combustible materials to ignite.
Roof damage can also affect the interior of your home. This type of damage can lead to water getting inside, which can wear away at the structure of your home. Water damage can also heighten the risk of mold.
Lightning strikes can also damage the interior of your home by causing power surges that damage electrical devices and appliances. If the voltage is too high, the surge could also cause electrical appliances to catch fire.
Depending on the circumstances, severe weather can also lead to flooding. Floods can lead to structural and electrical damage, causing sanitary hazards, defunct drainage systems, and contaminated drinking water.
Interior damage is not always immediately noticeable. You should check your home for any damage on a regular basis and after any major storm. Be on the lookout for missing shingles, leaks, or mold.
Do You Deed Weather Damage Insurance?
Your home insurance policy likely covers some weather damage. However, some insurance companies reduce their coverage for people in high-risk states like Florida. Let’s work through what homeowners insurance covers with regard to weather damage.
What It Covers
Homeowners insurance covers most severe weather damage, but the extent of the coverage can vary depending on your policy. A basic policy insures against extreme weather like fire, lightning, windstorms, fallen trees, and hail.
Although a standard policy covers wind and hail damage, you may have to pay a higher deductible depending on where you live.
What It Doesn’t
Since Florida is a high-risk area for severe weather, many policies exclude coverage for hurricanes, flooding, and earthquakes. So, you will likely have to purchase a severe weather policy for your home, as most mortgage lenders require it.
Protecting Your Home Against Weather Damage
Living in Florida comes with a significant risk of weather damage. However, there are steps you can take to protect your home.
Fortify Your Roof
Your home’s roof protects you from most types of severe weather damage. However, it’s also most at risk of destruction. You should regularly inspect your roof for loose, missing, or damaged shingles at least once a year and after every significant storm.
Clean Your Gutters
It’s also a good idea to regularly check and clean your gutters, especially since clogged drains can damage your roof. Cleaning your gutters at least twice a year prevents water damage, keeps pests away, and reduces the risk of a cracked foundation.
Check and Cut Trees
While necessary to our environment, falling trees can cause significant damage to your home. It’s crucial to maintain the trees around your home and ensure that they are a safe enough distance away from your property that they wouldn’t cause significant damage if they were to fall.
Speak to the Professionals
Severe weather is threatening enough, even without considering the risks to your home. Adverse weather events like hurricanes and tornadoes can lead to significant weather damage, which is dangerous and costly to fix.
If you’re having trouble with your insurance company, we can help you determine your options based on your insurance coverage. We will investigate, negotiate, and litigate your case to get you the results you deserve.
Schedule your free case review today with our Hollywood property damage attorneys. When insurance companies fail, Klotzman Property Damage Law succeeds.