Fierce wind gusts, hail, buckets of rain and flooded homes and streets are telltale signs of tropical storms and hurricanes, and the recent Tropical Storm Debby was no exception. This storm hovered over the Gulf Coast and then hit Tampa hard, dumping at least 15 inches of rain in parts and causing flooding.
Tropical Storm Debby, the fourth tropical storm of this 2012 hurricane season, caused slight to moderate damage to some homes and businesses and serious damage to others. Most damage consisted of wind damage, hail damage and flood damage.
For homeowners who sustained serious storm damage, there is no question that they will file residential insurance claims to collect for damages they suffered. However, homeowners who suffered minor property damage often find themselves asking if they should file insurance claims.
Many homeowners who suffered minor property damage want to know if their insurance premiums will go up after they file a claim. As insurance claim attorneys, we’ve had many people ask us if it would be worth it for them to file a claim – worried their insurance premiums would increase.
Filing an Insurance Claim After Tropical Storm Debby
Homeowners often believe that as soon as they turn in a claim for property damage, the insurance company will hike up their premiums. As insurance litigation lawyers, we want to dispel two myths:
- Rates don’t go up as soon as homeowners file insurance claims.
- Rates are not solely based on your specific home or claim. A policy will not go up based on one single claim.
Although homeowners in storm-prone areas should gear up for future premium increases because of the overall storm activity, rates generally don’t go up right away. And rates aren’t just based on your specific home damage. Instead, the rate increase will be based on a multitude of risk factors for a specific region, such as weather patterns and local geography, among other factors.
If you have sustained home damage in a storm and you are not sure if you should file an insurance claim, call a skilled insurance claim lawyer at the Voss Law Firm at 888-614-7730 for a free consultation today. We also will provide you with a complimentary copy of our book Disputes With Your Insurance Company – What All Consumers Need to Know.