This month’s article about how to use earthquake history to your advantage is written by Thomas Kaplan, author of “Earthquake for Dummies”Earthquake Home Owners Insurance – What You Need to Know.” Thomas has extensive knowledge in earthquake and insurance repair because he has been a major contributor to magazines on the subject and is an active member of the American Society of Earthquake Engineering. For more information about his services, visit his website at Earthquake History to Better Your Insurance Coverage.
People do not often take the time to learn about earthquake history and insurance repair before a major disaster. However, a major quake could take down most of your structures and lead to major damage in your home. Without proper insurance coverage, you could lose everything in your home, including your family.
Most insurance companies are aware of the dangers of the home and will not insure them for earthquakes. However, with a few exceptions, most insurance companies will insure your home if there is a valid reason. Do not assume that your insurance company will pay for everything you lose; it may not be the case.
If your structure was built with a certain type of foundation, then you should purchase a complete and updated damage insurance plan. The damage plan needs to provide specific coverage. Damage from an earthquake can include damage from liquefaction and displacement. Both of these are common conditions from earthquakes.
If you are facing financial loss from your earthquake-related damages, then you need to know that your home insurance policy will cover the losses for this reason. The damages coverage should include the following: lost income, lost wages, medical expenses, pain and suffering, property damage, and destroyed personal property. Be sure to know exactly what is covered in your home insurance plan and the losses that need to be covered.
When you go to get your home’s insurance quotes, check the estimated dollar value of your home and compare it to the estimated cost of the damages. You may be surprised at the difference between the two estimates.
If your home is damaged and your structure was not designed for this type of damage, then you need to contact a licensed specialist to assess the damages. A structural engineer should be able to assess the damage and determine whether or not your structure is a valid candidate for earthquake insurance. If the damage is due to an earthquake, then your insurance specialist can advise you as to the best plan of action to take after the insurance company has assessed the damage.
Although the damage from a quake can be fixed, do not assume that your insurance plan will pay for all of the damage. Insurance companies will require full and fair assessment of your insurance deductible before they will pay out. Do not assume that your home insurance is worth nothing if your house is destroyed by an earthquake.