Both Texas and Oklahoma have been inundated with rain lately. Severe rainstorms have caused a massive amount of flooding in both states, leading to damage to thousands of homes, vehicles and even loss of life. Insurance adjusters have been deployed to these states in order to assess the damage caused by these floods. For many homeowners, damage caused by flooding will not be covered by their insurance policies, as these policies do not offer flood protection.
As many as 4,000 properties in the Houston area alone have been affected by severe flooding. An estimated 19 people have lost their lives to the flooding in both Texas and Oklahoma. Property damage has been reported as being significant and widespread, but insurers are not sure of the exact extent of the damage as they are still assessing disaster areas.
Those lacking flood insurance may be in trouble. Conventional homeowners insurance policies do not offer flood protection. Without flood insurance coverage, homeowners are exposed to losses that are related to flooding disasters. Those in high risk flood areas are required to have flood insurance coverage, but others are not. Regardless, if you have been affected by flooding disaster, you are urged to contact your insurance provider. Your provider may be able to help evaluate your options.
Unfortunately, without appropriate coverage, homeowners could face a troubling financial situation that may place them under significant degree of stress.
There is not a lot of education regarding insurance as you make your way through school. As recent college graduates transition to living independently, including switching from their parents policies to one of their own, it can become very nerve racking.
Buying insurance for the first time can feel overwhelming. My first tip to any young adult would be to seek out an Independent Insurance Agent. These Insurance Agents are not tied to any one carrier, so they can provide you with quotes from many different top rated insurance companies. They research their entire insurance channel to compare insurance prices, go over the options with you personally and make sure you get the right coverage at the right price for your specific needs. Getting personal insurance advice is a huge advantage to anyone, but especially to someone purchasing insurance for the first time.
What Your Independent Agent Needs
Your driver's license or another proper form of identification.
Information about the items, such as your car and personal belongings you would like to insure. This can include the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN), the estimated value of your current personal belongings (for renter's insurance), etc.
Details about your prior insurance coverages. If you were previously insured under your parent's policy, ask them for a copy of their policy documents. This will let the Agent know what coverage levels you had in the past.
An idea of what kind of deductible you can afford. This is the amount you will pay out of your pocket if you have an auto accident or have personal property stolen, before your insurance policy kicks in. In most cases the higher the deductible, the lower the insurance premium will be.
Don't let purchasing your own insurance for the first time scare you. It's all about your relationship with your Insurance Agent, once you have established that - you will be set for years to come!
Spring time is in full bloom. This also means so are thunderstorms. Now is the ideal time to review your homeowners insurance, and even your car insurance to understand what may or may not be covered from fallen tree damage caused by storms.
Here are five important things to keep in mind:
1. Your homeowners insurance likely covers tree removal (for fallen trees) and damage repairs for your home and other insured structures, such as fences. Examples of covered incidents can include strong winds knocking a tree over onto your roof or lightning striking a tree, causing it to fall on your fence. However if a tree fall due to neglect, you may not receive any coverage.
2. If there's no damage, there's likely no insurance coverage. For example, if a tree falls on your property without damaging any insured structures, you will likely need to cover the costs of tree removal yourself.
3. Your city or municipality may clean up trees that fall into the street, but you may still have reason to file an insurance claim. Check with your city or municipality to determine who's responsible for removing a tree that falls into the street. If you city takes responsibility, it may only be for the portion that's in the street. Any of the felled tree that's left on your property will be your responsibility. Your insurance may help if an insured structure was damaged in the incident.
4. You may have coverage even if a tree falls from your neighbor's property. When a fallen tree damages your property, your homeowners insurance may pay no matter who owned the tree. Depending on the circumstances, your insurance carrier may attempt to recoup some of the costs, including your deductible, from your neighbor's insurance. This may occur, for example, if the neighbor was negligent in caring for the tree in the first place.
5. Your car insurance may cover damage to your vehicle from a fallen tree. If a tree falls from your property onto your car, it's your car insurance and not your homeowners insurance that will likely help cover the cost of repairs. But, the tree doesn't have to be from your property. You likely have coverage if a tree falls on your car, no matter from where. What may not be covered? The cost to remove the tree from atop your car.
Tips for Filing an Insurance Claim for a Fallen Tree
From our offices in Weatherford, Texas, we serve clients anywhere in the State of Texas, though the following areas are geographically closest to us: the counties of Dallas, Tarrant, Denton, Wise, Johnson, Parker and Hood and the cities of Arlington, Bedford, Brock, Burleson, Cleburne, Colleyville, Coppell, Dallas, Decatur, Euless, Fort Worth, Frisco, Granbury, Grapevine, Hurst, Keller, Mansfield, Millsap, Mineral Wells, North Richland Hills, Southlake, Watauga, Weatherford, and White Settlement.