Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Hurricane Damage?

Homeowners that live in coastal cities like Miami are more likely to experience damages caused by a hurricane, tropical storm, or another type of windstorm. To protect your home against these natural disasters, it’s important to have the right insurance coverage in place.

In most cases, homeowners insurance does include coverage to protect homeowners against damages caused by hurricanes and other windstorms. But depending on your insurance provider and where you live, this coverage may be excluded, or you might be required to pay a special hurricane deductible.

Here’s what you need to know about whether or not homeowners insurance covers hurricane damage.

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Does Home Insurance Cover Hurricane Damage?

If your home is damaged by hurricane wind, your home insurance policy will likely cover the repair costs up to your coverage limits. Wind is typically one of the named perils covered by standard homeowners insurance policies. Be sure to review your policy, though, to ensure that wind is covered as some policies may exclude it.

Homeowners that live in hurricane-prone areas, like Miami, may also have to pay a separate deductible for hurricane or wind damage that is higher than your standard deductible.

Keep in mind that most homeowners insurance policies do not cover flood damage, which includes flooding caused by a hurricane or tropical storm. To protect against flood damage, you'll need to purchase a separate flood insurance policy.

How Much Coverage Do You Need?

Depending on where you live, you may need to adjust your coverage limits to ensure you are fully protected if your home is damaged by a hurricane.

In particular, homeowners should focus on three coverage areas: dwelling coverage, personal property coverage, and loss of use coverage.

Dwelling coverage

Dwelling coverage protects your home’s structure against damages. This also includes your roof and built-in appliances.

As a general rule of thumb, your dwelling coverage limit should be equal to your home’s rebuild cost. Homeowners might even consider purchasing guaranteed replacement cost coverage to ensure their insurance pays for the entire cost to their home if it is destroyed by a hurricane.

Personal property coverage

Personal property coverage applies to your personal belongings that are not attached to your home’s structure. This includes everything from clothing and furniture to technology and appliances.

To determine your coverage limit, you should take inventory of everything you own and set your coverage limit equal to the replacement cost of your belongings. This will ensure you are able to replace them with items of equal value if they are lost or destroyed.

Loss of use coverage

Hurricanes can cause extreme damage that forces homeowners to temporarily relocate while their homes are rebuilt or repaired.

Loss of use coverage, also called additional living expenses coverage, helps pay for temporary living expenses while your home is uninhabitable.

To make sure your living expenses are covered while your home is being repaired, you should consider setting your loss of use coverage limit as high as your insurer will let you if you live in a hurricane-prone area.

Optional Endorsements for Weather-Related Damages

While homeowners insurance policies will typically cover damages caused by wind, they don’t always cover all of the damages caused by hurricanes and tropical storms.

To make sure you’re fully protected, consider adding these optional coverages to your home insurance policy.

Flood insurance

Home insurance policies do not cover flood damage, even if it is caused by a hurricane.

However, you may be able to purchase an optional flood coverage endorsement to add to your home insurance policy. If this endorsement is not available, you may need to purchase a separate flood insurance policy through the National Flood Insurance Program.

To learn more about your flood risk, you can look your address up on FEMA’s Flood Maps.

Hurricane and wind insurance

Some insurers exclude wind coverage from home insurance policies for homeowners in high-risk states like Florida and Texas.

If your home insurance policy does not cover wind damage, you may need to purchase hurricane and wind insurance to protect your home against hurricane damage.

Debris removal coverage

Debris removal can be a major unexpected expense after a hurricane. While home insurance will cover debris removal up to a certain amount, it may not cover all of your expenses.

To cover the costs of removing large debris, like fallen trees, you may need to purchase an optional debris removal coverage endorsement to fill in the gaps left by your home insurance policy.

Water backup coverage

Hurricanes can also result in sewage overflow, which can lead to extreme water damage in your home.

Water backup coverage protects both your home and personal property if sewage water floods your home through your plumbing. Water backup coverage is usually available as an optional endorsement when purchasing home insurance.

Request a Homeowners Insurance Quote

Homeowners insurance covers wind damage caused by hurricanes, but to cover other damages caused by hurricanes, you may need to purchase additional coverages, including flood insurance, hurricane and wind insurance, and debris removal coverage.

Contact FIB Insurance today to get a custom quote and learn more about homeowners insurance in Miami, FL.