Hurrican Shutters

Installing "Peace of Mind"

How to Avoid Hurricane Costs

Posted by cat5shuttersllc on November 28, 2011

How to Avoid Hurricane CostsIt’s hard to protect a home from a monster Category 5 hurricane, but many readily available products can reduce or minimize the impact and save homeowners big bucks in repairs Hurricane Costsand insurance premiums. The peace of mind that can result is priceless.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or NOAA, predicts the 2011 Atlantic hurricane season, will spawn six to 10 hurricanes — three to six of them major.

“Forecasts of an average season should not lead to complacency,” says Claire Wilkinson, vice president for global issues at the Insurance Information Institute. “An average hurricane season was also forecast in 1992 when Hurricane Andrew caused more than $23 billion in property losses.

“While many products don’t cost much money, they can have a major impact on the ability to withstand a hurricane and in many cases, offer opportunities for discounts from your insurance carrier. Homeowners may get discounts for things such as hurricane shutters, various types of roof coverings and the way the roof is attached to the structure.”

Retrofitting your home against hurricane damage can be an expensive project, says Wilkinson, but you can do it in stages. “Insurance companies may offer discounts for retrofitting which can help offset the cost.”

“There are a lot of things you can do (to your home) that are meaningful, affordable and make a difference,” says Leslie Chapman-Henderson, president of the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes. “Homeowners should select products that are tested and approved.” As the market for hurricane protection products has exploded, she adds, so has a wealth of products that claim to protect but which don’t really perform.

“As far as insurance goes, what we are seeing across the country are a number of programs that help place homeowners with matching grants to do retrofitting and to access different products,” says Chapman-Henderson. “There are programs in Florida and South Carolina and Alabama and Mississippi. Those programs are linked either by requirement or through the marketplace to ensure savings. The savings in Florida and South Carolina are quite significant. I believe their average savings to the homeowner who is engaged in retrofitting is 23 percent on their annual wind premiums.”

Discounts vary by state and carrier.

The Mississippi Windstorm Underwriting Association, for example, offers a 25 percent credit for windstorm insurance for houses built to a “fortified” standard. In Florida, the My Safe Florida Home program used to offer a free home inspection to point out a home’s vulnerabilities. According to Florida’s Department of Financial Services, such programs have saved participants an average of $385, or 20 percent of their annual premiums. Unfortunately, the program run out of funding in 2009 and it is not known when it is expected to resume.

Please follow this story on our blog. We will cover wonderful tips offered by Graig Guillot on some of the common products that can save you money.

Distributed by Viestly

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