People who live in San Diego County are preparing for a rare tropical event this weekend. The storm could bring flash flooding and high winds to parts of the county.
Bernardo Vasquez is a State Farm agent in Chula Vista. We spoke with him in January when California was getting hit by winter storms.
“Customers are asking us, ‘What do I do? I have water in my house, my roof is leaking, it’s raining right now’,” said Vasquez.
Before the storm arrives, be sure to take photos and videos of your home and belongings and upload them to the cloud. They will be useful if you have to file a claim.
He helped answer many questions about storm damage and insurance.
What does your insurance cover?
First, figure out what coverage you have, because flood insurance is different than your regular home insurance policy.
“Flood is when water is on the ground and seeps into your home,” said Vasquez.
He said a lot of homes don’t have flood insurance, but other damage caused directly by the storm itself might be covered.
“For example if your roof leaks, or a tree falls on your house,” said Vasquez.
Home insurance would also include any damage from the wind as well.
If a neighbor’s tree falls, is it their fault?
This would vary from case to case. Vasquez said your insurance would be the primary coverage, and if you file a claim with your neighbor’s insurance, you would likely need to prove that they were negligent, which led to the tree falling during the storm.
What about your car insurance?
Vasquez said if your car is damaged by flood water, falling trees, or something else, that’s when a comprehensive coverage policy — which is separate from collision coverage — would help.
What do you do?
If you need to file a claim because your home, property, or car is damaged, here’s what Vasquez recommends you do:
- Try to stop future damage. If the problem is caused by water, are you able to stop it or redirect the water?
- Take pictures and videos of everything. Documenting the damage and problems can help during the claims process.
- Contact your insurance company as soon as possible.
Alice J. Roden started working for Trending Insurance News at the end of 2021. Alice grew up in Salt Lake City, UT. A writer with a vast insurance industry background Alice has help with several of the biggest insurance companies. Before joining Trending Insurance News, Alice briefly worked as a freelance journalist for several radio stations. She covers home, renters and other property insurance stories.