As Hurricane Irma made her way through Florida, she brought heavy rain and storm surges to many areas in the State. During a hurricane, your property may experience water damage and flood damage. Did you know that there is a difference between the two?

Water damage, for example, happens when a tree tears a hole in your roof, causing water to pour into your home. An example of flood damage would be heavy rains causing flooding in the streets that seep into your property. Even though both situations involve water, the damages are each covered under separate insurance policies. They could even be handled by different insurance agencies.

It is important for Florida policyholders to know the difference between water and flood damage, especially in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma.

What is “Water Damage?”

Many policyholders suffer water damage to their home or business, often from things such as:

  • Ruptured or burst pipes
  • Water main breaks
  • Broken toilets
  • Overflowing bathtubs
  • Faulty washing machines or dishwasher hoses

Standard home or commercial insurance policies cover occurrences of water damage. Your insurance provider will directly handle these claims.

The Definition of Flood Damage

The Federal Emergency Management Agency or FEMA covers damage from flooding. They define flood damage as a general or temporary condition of partial or complete inundation of two or more acres and two or more properties of normally dry land.

Causes of flood damage include:

  • Unusual or rapid runoff or buildup of surface waters from any source
  • Overflow of tidal or inland waters
  • Collapse of land along the shore of a lake or similar body of water. This can be the result of undermining or erosion caused by waves or currents of water that have exceeded anticipated cyclical levels.

In order to obtain flood insurance, you will need to purchase it through the National Flood Insurance Program. If your property experiences flood damage, file your insurance claim with FEMA, not your home or commercial insurance provider. In the event of destruction from both hurricane winds and flooding, two separate claims will need to be filed. One claim will be filed with your home or commercial insurance agency, and the other with FEMA.

The Advantage of Hiring a Public Adjuster

The process of filing an insurance claim is long and tedious. Furthermore, after an area has experienced a widespread disaster like Hurricane Irma, the process can get even more lengthy and overwhelming. With a high volume of calls and claims, insurance companies’ resources are thin.

If you have suffered water or flood damage to your property, call Aftermath Adjusters today. We can help you handle the intricate details of the insurance claims process with your insurance provider.

At Aftermath Adjusters, our professional public adjusters have extensive experience dealing with hurricane, water, and flood damage. We have the necessary skills and training to help you reach a fair settlement to restore your damaged property. Working with a certified public claims adjuster will help give you peace of mind and confidence that things will work out.

If Hurricane Irma has impacted your home or business, contact the Florida-based company Aftermath Adjusters & Consulting LLC, at 954-329-2456.