If you are a resident of North Carolina, you don’t have to worry about experiencing an earthquake, right? Wrong! Just this past August, Sparta encountered an earthquake with a magnitude of 5.2 that literally “shook” those in Sparta and others as far as 300 miles away. If you never thought about insurance protection for earthquakes, maybe you should reconsider. Now you know earthquakes don’t just happen in California. Any state can experience this sort of disaster and you need to be prepared for when it does. Will you be protected from an earthquake if it strikes again?
Homeowners Insurance Excludes Coverage for Damages Caused by an Earthquake
Many people think their N.C. homeowners insurance policy will cover their home and contents for damages occurring from an earthquake, but this is incorrect. A standard N.C. homeowners insurance policy does NOT cover damages to your property or personal belongings caused by an earthquake. FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) may offer some relief if an earthquake hits causing your area to be coined a “disaster”, but even with that relief, it may be inadequate to replace your possessions and may only apply to certain individuals.
The good news is that you can get earthquake insurance through an add-on endorsement for an additional premium. There are different deductibles you can choose and varying amounts of coverage that can be tailored to your specific needs. Call us, your local N.C. independent insurance agent for quotes on earthquake coverage and with questions you may have pertaining to provisions, conditions and exclusions that may apply.
Are You Considering Earthquake Protection Now?
Before August of 2020, most N.C. residents didn’t think of the challenges an earthquake could present, but now many are reconsidering.
If you are thinking about earthquake protection, you should first create a home inventory taking into account all your valuables and assets. You may be surprised at how fast it adds up. This will help when deciding how much coverage you need and having documented inventory will help to speed up the claim handling process if you have damages resulting from an earthquake.
Next you will want to address any items, appliances or furniture that could be shaken or moved from the tremors. Consider pictures on the wall, ceiling/light fixtures, bookcases, television stands, and dressers and take efforts to secure these items properly. Also, brace any appliances with proper straps or other fittings to secure them in the event disaster strikes.
When an Earthquake Strikes
If an earthquake happens, it is normal to feel “shaken” up, but you need to try to remain calm and take the necessary actions to mitigate any further damages and protect your family. Below are some helpful tips to follow:
- Call our office at 336-869-3335
- Document all damages with pictures
- Cover any damaged property (such as roof, damaged windows, or doors) with a tarp or boarding
- Remove debris to reduce likelihood of further damages
- If possible, put all damaged items in one area for easier inspection for the insurance adjuster
- If possible, don’t initiate repairs until all the damages have been inspected
- Keep receipts of any repairs you MUST make prior to the inspection
Let Us Protect You Today for What May Happen Tomorrow
If you are contemplating adding earthquake insurance protection to your existing N.C. homeowner’s insurance policy, call us at Paramount Insurance Agency at 336-869-3335. We can assist you with any questions you have regarding earthquake protection and advise you of coverage options that best suit your particular concerns and needs. Call us TODAY!