5 Things Floridians Should Do Before Hurricane Season

As if 2020 didn’t throw enough hurdles our way, the hurricane season was a record-breaker. The season produced more named storms—30—than any previous season. The experts are calling for another season of above-average activity. Florida hasn’t seen a direct hit from a major hurricane since Hurricane Michael in 2018, but 2021 could break that streak. We’ve provided a checklist of essential items for Florida homeowners to complete before the season’s peak gets here.

  1. Secure important documents. Your important legal documents include your Will, living trusts, powers of attorney, health care proxies, titles, deeds, and birth certificate, for starters. A safe that is waterproof and fireproof is best for storing these documents. Make sure someone else (who doesn’t live with you) either has the combination or access to the combination. 
  2. Make sure you understand your homeowners coverage. If it’s been a while since you last glanced at your insurance policy, you might want to take another look. Memorize your coverage limits and deductible. Many homeowners policies do not cover damage resulting from floods or standing water. Talk to your agent to make sure your current coverage is meeting your needs. 
  3. Take pictures of your home’s interior and exterior. These pictures will help your insurance carrier see the specific effects of a hurricane. Be sure to take photographs of your most expensive assets. If at all possible, thoroughly document your personal property by preparing a detailed inventory. 
  4. Make improvements to your home. John F. Kennedy famously said that “The best time to fix the roof is when the sun is shining.” It’s a fantastic metaphor for so many things in life, but you could apply it literally when making hurricane preparations. Now is the time to ensure that your shutters are complete and fully operational. Cut down any trees or large branches overhanging your property. If a hurricane is on track to hit your house, put outdoor furniture inside your garage or shed. 
  5. Make an emergency kit. You need to anticipate the power being out for at least a few days after a major hurricane. This means several gallons of water, flashlights, weather radio, non-perishable food, basic first aid supplies, medicine, and matches. These are just some of the things your emergency kit needs. Don’t forget about your pets!

After the Storm

Of course, the most important consideration is the survival of you and your family. Do not ignore mandatory evacuation orders. If you choose to stay, make sure you have enough supplies in your emergency kit. 

Don’t take too long to file your claim with your insurance company. Your policy almost assuredly requires you to make the claim “promptly” (or similar wording). It’s possible that your insurance company will accumulate a backlog of claims in a short amount of time, so try to be patient. 

However, the best way to make sure your insurance claim is taken care of promptly and fairly is to have an attorney handle the process. Alvarez Law Group regularly helps the Florida insured get what they need and deserve. Our firm is currently offering a variety of discounts for current and prospective clients. Call us at 786-620-2820 for caring and compassionate legal representation.

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