Are you covered for storm season?
Stephanie Taylor Christensen
In many parts of the country, spring marks the start of storm season, and the storms continue right into the summer. If you own a home or car, it's important to make sure that have enough insurance to cover everything that Mother Nature throws at you.
The average cost for a lightning damage-related insurance claim is nearly $4,300, according to the Insurance Information Institute. Damage caused by lightning is considered part of standard coverage in home and business insurance policies. The comprehensive portion of an auto insurance policy also provides coverage against lightning damage. While there is no way of controlling where lightning will strike, you may be able to prevent losses -- and insurance claims -- by properly using surge protectors, lightning rods, conductors and ground rods, according to the Insurance Information Institute.
As one of the most common home ownership issues, water damage which includes flooding, leaks and burst pipes) results in an average insurance repair claim of about $5,500, according to the Insurance Information Institute. Coverage for burst pipes and wind-driven rain typically comes standard with a home or renter's insurance policy.
The general rule of thumb is that water that comes from the top down, like rainfall, is covered on a standard policy. However, "bottom up" water damage like flooding and sewer backups) require extra coverage, according to the Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration. Flood damage requires a separate flood insurance policy, while sewer backups require an endorsement on an existing home insurance policy.
Standard home insurance policies include coverage for damage caused by fallen trees and the contents of any structure they hit. This includes trees that fall in windstorms, hailstorms or snowstorms, according to the Insurance Information Institute.
Coverage for wind and tornado damage is included in standard home and business insurance policies. The coverage generally applies to repairs of both the damaged structure and its contents. Additionally, standard home insurance typically covers costs associated with temporarily moving to another residence while the damaged structure is under repair, according to the Insurance Information Institute. If your car is damaged by a tornado, the comprehensive portion of an auto insurance policy typically provides coverage.
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