There is no doubt that we have taken a battering over the past few weeks. Before we had time to recover from Ciara, Dennis hit, adding to the devastating flooding and storm damage that affected thousands of people across the country.
Storm damage can be caused by rain, wind or even lightning strikes. Fallen trees, damaged fences, flooding and wind damage have affected many people. If your fence is down, check to see who is responsible before making any repairs. Remember, if a neighbour’s fence, tree, or any other property for that matter, has fallen in your garden and caused damage, they are most likely to be responsible for repairs.
If repairing storm damage is your responsibility, don’t panic! You might be covered on insurance. Here’s what you need to know.
Usually, your buildings and contents insurance will cover storm damage that affects your actual home. This includes flood damage, lighting strikes, guttering or tiles that have blown off in the wind, or fallen trees or debris which hit the house. Whether or not your insurance policy covers fence damage will depend on your policy; some exclude damage to anything other than your actual house unless you opt to pay extra. If you have paid for the additional cover, or you have a comprehensive (usually more expensive) insurance policy, damaged caused to garden sheds, fences and gates by storms might be covered. If in doubt, contact your insurance company.
If your property is so badly damaged that you are unable to live in it, contact your insurance company immediately. Your cover might include the costs of seeking alternative accommodation while repairs are being done.
Once you have contacted your insurer and you have a better idea of what is, and what isn’t, included in your policy, take time to document any damage. Take photos, preferably with a time stamp on them so that you have a record of the date and time that the damage was recorded. If specific items are damaged or destroyed, don’t discard them; your insurance company may require them as proof before they pay out or offer a replacement.
Your insurance company may have approved contractors in your area who will undertake most repairs. However, if you have urgent repairs, such as broken windows or doors, check with the insurer before finding a reliable local trader to assist you. You will need to keep all of the receipts and evidence of the emergency repairs in order to claim the costs back from your insurer.
In order to prevent storm damage and ensure that you are covered by insurance, should your property be damaged by a storm, it is important that you take care of your property. To find out more, follow us on Facebook or Twitter.