There are few forces of nature that inflict as much damage or terror as hurricanes. With pelting rains, massive power outages due to downed utility lines, and whole cities underwater, hurricanes are serious business.
The District of Columbia is no stranger to hurricanes, and each resident needs to be aware of the possibility of a hurricane. It's important for residents of DC to have a disaster plan in place in case a hurricane hits, and this includes having a hurricane insurance policy in place to protect their homes and financial well-being.
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Washington, DC Hurricane Facts
Washington, DC has been hit with a number of hurricanes. Here's a rundown of the worst, along with some general hurricane facts:
- Hurricane Agnes caused massive flooding in 1972 and claimed 16 lives.
- Hurricane Isabel of 2003 made history, causing $7.3 billion in damages.
- On average, six hurricanes form every year.
- Hurricane winds have been clocked at up to 200 mph.
Hurricanes claim lives every year throughout the coastal states and cause billions of dollars in damages as well. Many people believe that their homeowners insurance will cover flood damage from a hurricane. Unfortunately, this is untrue. Homeowners insurance will cover rain damage, but if a flood is at the root of the damage, the costs may not be covered.
What Is Hurricane Insurance in Washington, DC?
Hurricane insurance is special part of a homeowners insurance policy. It's not a separate policy; however, in DC there is a specific deductible in place for hurricanes. Typically, you can expect to pay 1-5 percent of the total damage to your home from the hurricane as a deductible before the insurance kicks in. Deductibles for hurricane insurance vary from state to state, except for Florida, where they are set by state law.
Flooding is usually not covered by homeowners insurance, and must be purchased through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).
What Does Hurricane Insurance Cover in Washington, DC?
When hurricanes happen, once your deductible is paid, your insurance will kick in to cover your damages. These include:
- Dwelling: This coverage will repair the house and any attached structures such as a garage.
- Possessions: This coverage will repair damage to possessions and furniture.
Some insurance policies will require a separate deductible for each coverage type, one for the dwelling and one for possessions. Once the deductible has been paid, you will be reimbursed for the damages that remain. There are two forms of reimbursement:
- Actual Cash Value (ACV): This replaces the item at its original cost, and takes depreciation into account.
- Replacement Cost Value (ACV): This replaces the item at its value without accounting for depreciation.
You can choose the type of reimbursement you'd like when purchasing your policy.
What About Flooding From Hurricanes in Washington, DC?
Having flood insurance is a wise choice. Flood insurance is designed to protect you from damages caused by floods. The whole United States is mapped out and given cost designations for flood insurance policies. The prices for flood insurance are set by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), and the policies are also administrated by the NFIP, although they are sold by insurance companies. You can choose different types of coverage, as well as different deductibles, just like a regular policy. A typical flood insurance policy will offer the following coverage:
- Dwelling coverage: This coverage insures up to four single-family residential buildings or single-family units in a condominium or townhouse, and is the most common type of flood insurance. Dwelling coverage offers two different types of coverage:
- Building property coverage: Covers up to $250,000 in damage
- Personal property coverage: Covers up to $100,000 in damage
- General property: If you are a property owner with five or more buildings, this insurance will cover you.
- Residential condominium building association: If you are a landlord and have rentals, such as a townhome or condos, this coverage will work best for you.
How Much Is a Hurricane Insurance Quote in Washington, DC?
A typical homeowners insurance policy can vary greatly in price. When shopping for a hurricane insurance quote in Washington, DC, make sure to have the following information ready in order to get an accurate quote:
- Location of home
- Size of home
- Whether home is financed or owned outright
- Age of home
- Value of home
- Number of residents
- Age of residents
- Value of belongings
- Your credit score
- History of claims
- If home has a security system
- If home has a pool/spa
- Any pets in the home
- If there are smoke detectors in the home
Lenders usually require homeowners insurance when an individual purchases a home. Flood insurance may also be required in the area where you live. It's always a good idea to contact your lender for insurance requirements.
What About Hurricane Damage to My Car, Boat, or RV?
Only comprehensive insurance will cover hurricane or flood damage to your car, boat, RV, or other items. Comprehensive insurance is known as "everything other than collision" and typically covers the damage from hurricanes. Many lenders require this insurance to be maintained on a financed item until the loan is satisfied.
How Do I Get Washington, DC Hurricane Insurance?
When considering purchasing hurricane insurance to protect your assets, it's important to get a quote that offers the right amount of coverage, at the right price. A Trusted Choice® member agent can help you get quotes, answer questions, and even help you file a claim. Find an agent in your area to get started.