Hurricane Season: Homeowners Insurance and Auto Insurance Coverage

A house stands while hurricane winds blow the trees behind it

Hurricane season takes place from June to November every year, and the heightened risk of serious storms can pose a threat to your home and your assets. A good way to prepare for an upcoming hurricane season is to review your home and auto insurance policies to make sure you have sufficient coverage if you’re hit by a destructive storm. This simple step of preparation can go a long way in protecting your loved ones and your assets. Here’s what you need to know about hurricanes and your home and auto insurance.

Does homeowners insurance cover hurricane damage?

A standard home insurance policy should provide coverage for wind damage, which is one of the biggest risks of a hurricane. Depending on where you live, though, a wind or special hurricane deductible could apply. Water damage from a hurricane may be covered as well, unless the insurance carrier classifies it as damage from flooding, which would likely require a separate policy.

Does flood insurance cover hurricane damage?

If a hurricane causes flooding in your house, your home insurance policy may not provide coverage. That’s where flood insurance comes in. Flood insurance provides coverage for any damage that’s a result of any water that enters from the ground. Just one inch of water can cause tens of thousands of dollars in damage, so flood insurance can be an incredibly valuable investment if your home is hit by a hurricane. In fact, if you live in a high-risk area for flooding, whether from storm surges or otherwise, your mortgage lender may even require you to buy a separate flood insurance policy.

How to Prepare for a Hurricane: Insurance Tips for Homeowners

As you approach hurricane season, a simple way to gain peace of mind is to reevaluate your homeowners insurance policy. By reviewing your current coverage, you’ll know where you are (and aren’t) protected if a hurricane damages your home. 

There are also several other steps you can take to prepare your home and your belongings for hurricane season.

Plan Ahead

The key to hurricane preparedness is planning ahead. Don’t wait until hurricane season is already here. Taking action in the months ahead will ensure you and your loved ones are ready to navigate the impacts of a serious storm.

  • Prepare an emergency supply kit with items like medical supplies, flashlights and batteries, water and nonperishable food.
  • Write down a list of emergency phone numbers and store it in a safe place. You should also program these numbers into your cell phone.
  • Locate nearby emergency shelters and make sure you’re familiar with the routes to them.

Find a Safe Place to Store Emergency Supplies

Your emergency supplies will be vital during a severe storm event, so you want to make sure they’re stored in a safe place. Place supplies in waterproof containers and store them in an area that is least likely to be impacted by water or wind damage, like a high shelf in an interior closet. Emergency supplies that you’ll want to have on hand include:

  • Shelf-stable foods like canned goods (at least a 3-day supply)
  • Water (at least a 3-day supply per person)
  • Medical supplies, including first-aid supplies and any medications 
  • Important documents like personal identification, wills and medical paperwork
  • Emergency power sources such as flashlights and extra batteries

Know When to Evacuate or Stay at Home

If a hurricane is projected to hit your area, it can be difficult to know if you should evacuate or stay at home. If authorities issue an order for you to evacuate, you should never ignore it. Authorities may also encourage you to stay at home, particularly if conditions are too unsafe to travel. If you do need to evacuate, make sure you only bring necessary supplies, like your emergency kit, important documents and medications. Relying on expert guidance can help you make the choice whether to evacuate or stay.

How much does hurricane insurance cost?

The cost of hurricane insurance depends on the insurer and where you live, as well as whether you have a separate wind damage policy or separate flood insurance coverage. If you live in a hurricane-prone state, your rates may be significantly higher for wind and flood coverage. Keep in mind that storms can be unpredictable, and the cost of hurricane insurance can be well worth the financial security net if your home or assets are damaged by a storm.

Does car insurance cover hurricane damage?

Collision and comprehensive auto insurance should cover damage from a hurricane. For example, if your car was damaged from debris, your comprehensive coverage should help cover repairs. If you were to get in an accident during a heavy rain, your collision coverage should then help pay for repairs. If you are unsure about the types of coverages you have on your auto insurance policy, reviewing the policy ahead of hurricane season is a good idea.

Does car insurance cover flood damage?

Car insurance will likely cover flood damage as long as you have comprehensive coverage. A comprehensive plan covers damage to your car from an event that’s out of your control, such as a natural disaster, theft, vandalism, or other unpredictable events. If you are concerned about flood damage to your vehicle during hurricane season, you should review your auto insurance policy to see whether or not you have comprehensive coverage.

What To Do If Your Car Floods

If you find that your car has been flooded after a storm, do not attempt to start it. You can use a wet vacuum to remove any standing water and towels to absorb water in the cushions and seats. You’ll also want to get in contact with your car insurance carrier to get the claim process started. There is a chance your car can be saved after flooding, but your insurance carrier will weigh the costs to repair the vehicle against the cost of replacing it.

Make Sure Your Home and Car Are Protected from Hurricane Damage with SelectQuote

We know protecting your home, your belongings and your loved ones is your top priority in the event of a hurricane. If you have questions when reviewing your home or auto policies for hurricane season, we can help. At SelectQuote, we’ll take the time to learn more about what you hope to protect and help you find the right coverage for your needs and budget.

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