It is a common practice in Florida to have a deductible that is a percentage of your coverage. Coverage is the insured value of your home, and it’s important to know what your deductible is. It’s also important to know that it’s not the responsibility of insurance companies to determine if you have a claim or not. While it can work this way, it’s not the ideal way to go about handling a claim. Check out this article to learn more about what to do before you file a claim

Unless you are absolutely sure your damage exceeds your deductible, you should really talk with your agent before taking action. Just because your agent has all the carrier’s claim phone numbers listed on their site doesn’t mean you start there. Your agent’s role is to help you navigate the claims process, which starts with determining if you need to file a claim.


Know Your Deductible

Locate your hurricane deductible on your declaration page. Depending on the insurance company, you could have a $500, $1,000, $2,500, $5,000, or even a deductible that is 1% or 2% of your Coverage A. For example, if your Coverage A or Dwelling (also known as Building Coverage) is $200,000 and you have a 2% deductible, your deductible amount is $4000. Like all deductibles, the lower the deductible, the higher the premium. While many carriers only offer 2% deductibles for hurricane, carriers have more recently started offering $500.


Contact Us

Contact your agent or our office to discuss what a lower deductible premium would look like for you. Lowering your deductible can only be done at renewal as it is not an endorsement. The other option would be to rewrite your policy to another company midterm. Contact your agent or our office to determine the best option for you.


Here’s what you need to know.

After a hurricane, it is rare not to have some impact to your property. Hurricanes are mother nature’s way of cleaning up her yard such as blowing away dead tree limbs and branches which could result in damage to your home or vehicles.

While your first reaction may be to call your insurance company, it’s important to note that most policies have an increased deductible when it involves a hurricane. So you’ll need to first determine if the damage exceeds your deductible. For instance, if you have $2,500 in damage and a $4,000 deductible, filing a claim is the last thing you’ll want to do. Not only will your claim get denied, they’ll be contacting you to make sure all damage has been repaired to their specifications.

Get all the numbers and know where you stand. Your agent should be able to assist you with this with a quick call. Also, request that your agent documents your call to find out whether or not to file a claim. Your next step is to get estimates. 


Why estimates? They serve two purposes. 

  1. They help determine if your damages exceed your deductible and warrant a claim.
  2. It’s good to understand that most adjusters immediately after a hurricane are generalists such as an electrician. If you have an electrical claim, that’s the adjuster you want. That same electrician also assesses other damage, such as your roof, which gives you a head start on resolving your claim.

With the information you’ve gathered, you can now make a decision to proceed with a claim or not.

Your agent is your resource on filing a claim. Insurance companies look at claims all the same whether it’s a $5,000 claim, a $15,000 claim, or a claim filed that pays zero. That matters because it has an impact on your ability to shop for insurance in the future, or worse, subject you to a non-renewal from a denied or an unpaid claim.


Contact our office should you have any questions 386-673-5550