What do you do when your property has been impacted by natural disasters?

Sandbags in torrential flood defence in City Road

 

The potential devastation wind and water can have on a fix-and-flip investment property you own, or one that you are considering purchasing, is significant.

 

In the event of property damage, here are some immediate steps professionals advise any would-be or current property owner:

– File a claim with your homeowner’s insurance as soon as possible.

– If your standard homeowner’s policy does not cover flooding (the average flood claim is $30,000), you can open a claim with FEMA.

– It’s important to know that claims are often handled differently. For example, water coming through your roof might be treated differently than water rushing in from ground level, and vice versa. For these reasons,    in addition to contacting your insurance agent, we also recommend that you learn how the claims process works here.

– Either way, request a certified copy of your policy from your agent if you do not have one, or if it was damaged in the disaster.

 

In the meantime, here are some other factors to take into consideration that impact your flood insurance premiums:

– The age of building(s)

– The number of occupants

– The number of floors

– The location of contents

– The severity of flood risk (currently rated flood zone)

– The location of the first (lowest) floor to the elevation requirement on the flood zone map for your area (used for newer buildings)

– The preferred deductible amount compared with the amount of building and content coverage

 

FEMA offers accessible Q&As for homeowners who are unsure where to start. Visit their site here for more information. Even if you have not been impacted by hurricane Harvey or Irma, we urge that you research ways to prepare and cover your properties before a disaster strikes.