Missouri is a beautiful state, with everything from gentle, rolling hills to caverns and caves. The cold winters and hot, humid summers make it a prime location for tornadoes. In fact, Missouri is situated in "Tornado Alley," which makes having tornado insurance a smart idea. The most recent tornado in the state was the 2011 Joplin tornado, which left one-third of the city of Joplin completely destroyed. This tornado also caused an estimated $1 billion to $3 billion in damage, killed 159 individuals and injured more than 1,000 people. Before you settle on an insurance plan to protect yourself and your family, make sure you get reliable quotes from a reputable insurance agent.
MO Tornado Facts
- There is an average of 26 tornadoes every year in Missouri.
- Missouri ranks #8 for frequency of Tornadoes.
- Missouri ranks #12 for number of deaths, #15 for injuries, and #9 for cost of damages.
Making sure you have tornado insurance to cover your belongings and your home is one way to make sure that, in case a tornado damages your property, you will be able to replace your belongings. While a tornado can be devastating, knowing that you have adequate coverage will offer peace of mind and let you focus on staying safe.
How Much Tornado Insurance Do You Need?
It's important to note that tornadoes happen in Missouri every year. While many homeowners insurance policies don't specifically cover tornadoes, they do cover damage from high wind. It's imperative that you review your policy to be sure that you have adequate coverage amounts. Additionally, reviewing auto policies is a smart idea to ensure that your vehicle is covered.
When reviewing your policies, make sure to take notice some things:
- Is your home insured at actual cash value or replacement cost? Actual cash value does not take into consideration improvements or inflation, which means you may end up getting less than the actual value of the home.
- Many policies have personal property coverage, but is it enough? All of your belongings are subject to coverage limits. Make sure that your coverage is high enough to cover your belongings. This includes any high-value items such as artwork, jewelry and antiques.
How To Cover Your Home for Tornado Damage
Tornadoes come and go quickly. The devastation left in their wake can be overwhelming. Before a storm hits, it's important that you have everything you own covered with Missouri tornado insurance.
Your first step to getting coverage that's right for your home is to take a home inventory. This lists every room in the house, what's in it, and the value of those items. Be sure to take pictures or video of any high value items and write down their serial numbers.
When talking with your agent, see if your policy will cover your vehicle if an incident causes damage to it while in the garage. Some policies will cover this, and some will not.
Also, inquire about living expenses. Crashing on a friend's couch may be fine for a day or two, but rebuilding a house takes time; where will you stay, and who will pay for your living expenses during that time? It's a wise idea to have in mind a general amount that your family needs per month to survive.
How To Cover Your Auto/ATV/Boat for Tornado Damage
While many people are mainly concerned with damage to their home during a tornado, the loss of a car, ATV or boat can be devastating as well.
While most comprehensive auto insurance policies will cover damage from a tornado due to wind damage coverage, state law does not require this type of insurance. Since only liability insurance is required, you will be paying out of pocket for tornado damage to your vehicle. Additionally, you will need a separate policy to cover your ATV or boat.
Steps To Filing a Tornado-Related Insurance Claim
When disaster strikes, it's difficult to know what to do. Here are a few steps to take when a tornado has struck:
- First, make sure that everyone is safe, and that the tornado has passed.
- Contact your insurance agent as soon as possible. Many insurance agencies will send out relief teams to help tornado victims recover by offering medical aid, monetary aid, food and shelter. Notify them as to what has occurred.
- Take photographs of the damage, and list all the items that are not salvageable. Get these to your insurance agent as soon as possible.
- Work with your insurance agent to get repairs done. Never sign a contract for repairs without getting a written bid from a state-licensed contractor.
How To Get Tornado Insurance
While your regular policies may cover tornadoes, they may not offer enough protection or coverage to satisfy your situation. A Trusted Choice® agent is always available to help you review current coverage, get insurance quotes and help you decide if additional coverage is right for you.