APCIA urges homeowners to be hurricane-ready

Upcoming season forecast to be above normal

APCIA urges homeowners to be hurricane-ready

Catastrophe & Flood

By Terry Gangcuangco

The American Property Casualty Insurance Association (APCIA) has been quick to react following the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) 2024 Atlantic hurricane season forecast, urging homeowners to be as prepared as they can be.

Michael Richmond Crum, senior personal lines director at APCIA, commented: “An active and costly hurricane season could exacerbate the challenges that many policyholders across the US, but particularly in disaster-prone regions like the hurricane-exposed coastline, face with rising insurance costs and availability challenges.

“With hurricane season starting on June 1, it is critical for residents to take steps now to reduce the potential for damage to their property during hurricane season. Many insurers offer discounts for mitigation measures that help reduce the likelihood of a loss or the extent of damage. Discounts vary by company, so policyholders should contact their insurer or agent to see what discounts are available.”

APCIA’s recommendations for the upcoming hurricane season, which NOAA is predicting to be above normal, include strengthening homes against damage by trimming back nearby trees, repairing loose or damaged roof shingles, securing gutters, and sealing window or door cracks and gaps to avoid water intrusion.

Homeowners are also encouraged to review their insurance policies to ensure appropriate cover is in place. Another APCIA suggestion is making a home inventory, using photos and videos, while keeping copies of insurance policies somewhere safe but accessible. Having insurers’ contact information on hand is also advisable.

“The Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety has developed scientifically proven standards that enable homes and businesses to withstand increasingly severe storms, including specific upgrades that exceed most current building codes,” the APCIA senior director noted.

“Strengthened building codes are critical to improving resilience against natural perils. More homes and communities in hurricane-prone states can and should be strengthened to be more resilient.

“As residents along the Gulf Coast and Eastern Seaboard turn their focus to preparing for hurricane season, we urge everyone to find ways to strengthen their home and reduce the potential for damage. We must all work together to increase our resiliency and reduce losses from severe weather to help make insurance more affordable and available long-term.”    

According to NOAA’s forecast, as many as 13 hurricanes can be expected this season, out of the estimated 17 to 25 named storms. Of the hurricanes, four to seven are predicted to be under categories 3, 4, or 5.  

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