Hurricanes and Insurance

There are lots of questions coming about hurricanes and insurance right now. Hopefully this helps!

With Hurricane Sandy hitting the East Coast and many inland cities, millions of people in the United States and Canada will need their home insurance to repair water damage, wind damage and damage caused by falling objects like trees for example. Whenever there is a major storm like Sandy (or like Katrina, Irene and others that have come before), people wonder if they have the right insurance in place.

What Insurance Do I Need For Hurricane Related Damage?

Please keep in mind that insurance coverage in Canada is quite a bit different from coverage in the United States. This page and the entire site is written with the Province of Ontario as a point of reference.

Water Damage - much damage caused by Hurricane Sandy (and other Hurricanes like Irene and Katrina) comes from water damage.

In Ontario, a lot of water damage claims related to major storms blowing through is from flooding in basements. This is the result of sewer back up and sump pump failure. Coverage for sewer back up and sump pump failure is optional in most Canadian Home Insurance policies. Without it, many water damage claims related to flooding are not covered.

An important aspect of home insurance and water damage is that seepage and leakage is often excluded from Ontario home policies. This means that water seeping through a cracked foundation would not be covered in most cases.

Water can also enter the home due to damage to the exterior of the home, most often the roof. This damage is usually caused by wind damage to the roof

Wind damage - Big storms, even those hundreds of kilometres away like Hurricane Sandy, can cause extensive wind damage. Often this is to roofs, windows, and other exterior property. Thankfully most insurance policies cover wind damage like this.

Falling Objects - another coverage to consider is for falling objects that might hit your home, like trees for example.

Power Outages - A loss of power can result in damage to a home or its contents. For example, a freezer may thaw causing the loss of frozen food. A more expensive example would be a collection of cigars in a climate controlled room. In most cases, specific coverage is required for this.

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Note: Always speak with a licensed insurance professional about your specific situation. This insurance information is general in nature and the policy wordings always take precedence. It is possible that there are errors and omissions in this website and, or its authors, take no responsibility.

Keep in mind that insurance licensing, legislation, and policies often vary by province and most certainly by country. Canada Insurance Source is a free information source. So use this site to gain a general understanding of insurance with your own area and situation in mind.  Make sure you review the "please read" page. Always speak with a licensed insurance professional about your specific situation.

Always speak with a licensed insurance representative about your specific situation.

This site is general in nature and there may be errors or ommissions

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