Winter Storm Insurance for Homeowners
Winter storms are common throughout most of the country, and can be quite severe in Northern latitudes. The good news is that most policies include the effects of winter storms, such as hail, damage from snow and ice and heavy blowing winds. But since the storms can be particularly costly in some regions, it is up to the homeowner to review their policy and determine whether it contains exclusions that negate the responsibility of the insurance company in your particular case.
Wind damage and damages cause by rain, hail, ice and snow are usually included in home insurance packages, but all insurance companies are different, and some companies, especially in damage-prone areas, may have put exclusions on their policies to prevent heavy losses. If this happens, you have the option of purchasing separate coverage, called a rider, or shopping for a new insurance company which includes winter storms as part of the basic policy.
Winter storm damages can be incidental as well as direct. For instance, if the storm knock out power for a period of time, you could face the loss of food stored in your refrigerator or freezer, or be forced to eat at restaurants or find other means of providing for your family. In this situation, the loss of use portion of your insurance policy provides for reimbursement of the money you have to pay out of pocket to maintain a regular standard of living for your family. You should save all the receipts associated with the loss of use, and document how they pertain to the situation, because the better you are able to illustrate the need for such expenses, the easier it will be for the insurance company to justify repaying your costs.