In Winter’s Grip

Winter’s grip clamps down hard in January and February, promising school cancellations and fun on the ski slopes. But winter also means brutally cold weather and unforgiving blizzards.

According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), winter storms are the third largest cause of property damage, with hurricanes and tornados taking the top spots. In fact, the III states that from 1990-2009, 25 billion dollars in insured losses resulted from winter storms alone.

Homeowners insurance policies cover structural damage from the usual winter-weather offenders like intense wind, snow and hail, but there are other nasty winter side effects that are often overlooked such as flood damage due to melting snow, ice build up on the roof or around windows as well as the coastal flooding that often accompanies winter storms. Water damage can be both costly and distressing, especially if insureds lack flood insurance.

Whether you have flood insurance or not, an immediate post-loss inventory of lost or damaged items is crucial for contents valuation and replacement. For those without flood insurance, a contents inventory and valuation can still be used to file a federal tax income deduction for losses due to flood damage.

Carriers who provide contents claims services and the expertise insureds need to get their lives back in order as quickly as possible have a lot to gain from more efficient and accurate contents claims – not to mention improved customer satisfaction and trust from insureds who have the peace of mind knowing that they are covered for everything the elements can throw at them.

(Graph Source: http://www.iii.org/facts_statistics/winter-storms.html)

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