Prepare Now for Potential Homeowner Insurance Claims
HARRISBURG, Pa., Oct. 26, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Hurricane Sandy may wreak havoc along the East Coast early next week. Insurance Commissioner Michael Consedine is reminding homeowners that storm preparation can save property damage and claim headaches.
"Sandy has the potential to be a powerful and possibly historic storm for the East Coast, so preparation is essential," said Commissioner Consedine. "Take the time now to minimize potential damage in and around your home. Trim trees, clean rain gutters and remove items from your yard or porch that can blow around. Inside, move furniture or electronic devices from lower levels at risk for flooding."
Before the storm hits:
- Take an inventory of your personal property, including model numbers, serial numbers and purchase information.
- Document your inventory by videotaping or photographing each room in your house.
- Keep your insurance policies, household inventory and other important papers in a secure place. You may want to consider sending copies of documents to a trusted friend or family member outside your area.
- Keep a camera, notebook and pens in your emergency supply kit for documenting your losses.
After the storm:
- Don't re-enter your home or start repairs until you know it's safe. If returning home after an outage, don't turn on the power right away if your home is flooded. Have an electrician check it first.
- Contact your insurance company as soon as possible. While waiting for an insurance adjuster to arrive, take steps to prevent further damage to your property. But don't make permanent repairs until the adjuster has inspected your property.
- Take extensive photographs of the damage, and keep all of your receipts and documents, as well as records of conversations with the insurance company. Make an itemized list of all the storm-related damage.
- If your home is uninhabitable, most insurance policies will pay for additional living expenses while your home is being repaired.
- Also, be aware, some homeowner's policies carry hurricane deductibles that may increase out-of-pocket costs. So review your policy now.
For more tips, visit www.insurance.pa.gov and click on the "storm tips" icon. Consumers with questions or complaints can call the department's toll-free, consumer hotline at 877- 881-6388.
Media contact: Rosanne Placey or Melissa Fox, 717-787-3289
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Insurance