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What’s your deductible if there is a hurricane?

By Thomas M Kallman

Hurricane season begins June first. 1999 is anticipated to be a very active year with a high number of named storms and powerful hurricanes. Injuries, deaths and huge amounts of property damage occur during massive natural disasters such as a hurricane. Being prepared involves much more than buying some candles, batteries, canned foods and bottles of water.

One of your most important priorities should be checking your insurance to be sure you have the necessary coverage, and that your deductibles are in line with what you can afford. Since wind and hail deductibles of 2%, 3%, 5% and even 10% have become commonplace in recent years, many insureds are unaware of the huge financial impact this would have in the event of a wind related loss. If you have a wind deductible of 5%, and your property is insured for $250,000; your deductible would be $12,500 in the event of a loss, even a minor one. The calculation is usually based on total insured values, not the loss amount and can apply separately to building and contents. Many policies apply the deductible to loss of business income as well, and some may exclude the coverage altogether.

Since Hurricane Andrew hit South Florida in 1992, other even more powerful storms have battered the US, Mexico, South America, and the Caribbean. Andrew was powerful but the damage, while over 25 Billion dollars, would be much greater today. Many more homes have been built, many new residents have arrived, and construction costs are higher than ever.

Does your insurance agent or company have emergency plans and procedures? Noting them will prove invaluable later should there be a loss. Be sure you have the insurance you need. Contact your independent agent today. Insurance cannot be placed or increased while a storm threatens, so don’t wait.

Thomas Kallman is President of TMK Risk Management Inc dba Kallman Insurance Agency at PO Box 266736, Weston, Florida 33326. Phone 954-389-5897 and email Your questions are always welcome.

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