You may have protected your office building from liability if someone is injured on the property, but it is just as vital to protect the property itself. You and your tenants will need strong property damage policies that protect against weather-related losses, including those caused by high winds. Attorney Bill Voss explores how office building owners can protect themselves against costly wind damage and get proper compensation after a storm.
Paying for the Costs of Windstorm Damage to Commercial Office Buildings
The first thing office building owners should know is that many private insurers will not pay for wind damage to properties in Texas coastal areas. As a result, property owners may need special insurance coverage through the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association (TWIA). This coverage can make all the difference if a private insurer denies or underpays a property damage claim.
Some optional forms of property insurance that may be worth the investment include:
- Signage and landscaping. The way your office building looks from the outside is a testament to the quality of the property. If a windstorm damages the signage, trees, flowers, or letters adorning the structure, customers may think twice about visiting the property—and prospective tenants may think twice about renting.
- New properties coverage. If you are in the process of expanding your real estate holdings, your new properties may not be covered under an existing insurance policy. Extensions for temporary coverage of recently-acquired properties may be available through your current insurer, while buildings under construction must be protected by builder's risk insurance.
- Business income loss insurance. Space in office buildings is typically rented to commercial tenants, and if the tenant has suffered wind damage losses, the tenant may not be able to pay rent. Business income loss allows a property owner more flexibility if a tenant must break his or her lease early or ask for a rent extension until repairs are complete.
If you are struggling to rebuild after a severe wind storm, our attorneys can work to get full and fair payment from your commercial insurance carrier. Simply fill out the form on this page today to contact an insurance attorney at the Voss Law Firm or order a free copy of our book, Commercial Property Owners Must Read This BEFORE Filing an Insurance Claim.