New program helps Florida residents prepare for hurricane season

The Prepare Florida program will help residents of the state take measures to protect themselves before a major storm hits. Taking action prior to hurricane season can be important because hurricanes can often form and make landfall with little warning. Ideally, Florida residents will have an emergency kit that will make it possible to organize financial and other information in one place. The program also offers advice about how to find insurance and how to file a claim.

Flood program receives another extension

Florida residents may be interested to know that the U.S. House of Representatives approved on May 30 a short-term continuation of the flood insurance program through June 14. This was after the House failed to reauthorize the program as part of a $19 billion disaster aid bill. The same broader bill has already been cleared in the Senate. If it passed the House, it would have kept the program going until Sept. 30.

AAA survey examines attitudes about hurricanes

A new AAA survey found that more than 90% of people in Florida are concerned about the upcoming hurricane season. Nearly 20% said they are more worried about it than they were a year ago. Five recent major storms in the state have racked up over $200 billion in damages.

FEMA says more people need flood insurance

Another hurricane in Florida in the season ahead may dangerously overburden the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which already has more than 50 of what is called "open disaster events". FEMA has faced criticism for its response to hurricanes and other natural disasters, but the agency says people need to protect themselves more with insurance.

Florida legislature passes insurance reform bill

Florida lawmakers have passed a bill that the insurance industry claims wil modernize the state's system and limit certain types of lawsuits. This comes as many Florida homeowners are still struggling with claims filed for hurricane damage and other types of problems caused by severe weather. House Bill 301 addressed a number of issues related to the state's insurance industry and could be a mixed bag for insured homeowners.

Nearly 90% of homeowners don't carry enough flood insurance

The vast majority of homeowners around the country don't have enough flood insurance, according to a report by ValuePenguin.com. However, the financial website found that Florida has the second highest percentage of residents with flood coverage in the nation.

How to prepare before a storm hits

Florida homeowners and others who have been impacted by a major weather event may need to file an insurance claim afterward. Filing an insurance claim can be easier by taking action before the storm such as talking with an insurance agent. This can help a person determine if they are covered for wind, rain or other types of damage that could occur. Furthermore, individuals should take pictures or videos of their homes before the storm hits.

Hurricane Michael causing damage six months later

Florida homeowners who were victims of Hurricane Michael continue to face costly damages and persistent problems, even months after the storm left the Panhandle. In April 2019, the federal government revised its earlier estimation of the storm, which it had recorded as a Category 4 hurricane. Instead, it noted that Michael was actually a Category 5 storm with wind speeds of around 160 mph when it hit land in October 2018. The storm was one of the most powerful hurricanes to ever hit the country, especially in a highly populated area; with the correction, it is only the fourth Category 5 storm on record.

Homeowners paying higher price for insurance

Many Florida homeowners may find themselves paying a higher price for homeowners' insurance than they did in the past. According to one study, the premiums paid for this type of insurance have risen by 88 percent in the past 10 years. A finance company said that ongoing natural disasters may be one reason for the increase, but insurance companies are continuing to bring in significant profits.

Homeowners may face battle over water damage claims

When a pipe bursts, the resulting water damage can be devastating to Florida homeowners. They may turn to their homeowners' insurance for coverage for the substantial bills that can shortly follow a significant plumbing problem. However, you may be surprised to learn that some insurers may delay or even deny claims for water damage caused by broken pipes, claiming that you should instead have additional flood insurance. Insurance companies are often dedicated above all to protecting their bottom line.

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