Understanding Your Windstorm Insurance in Texas

Be sure you have windstorm in the Galveston Coast to protect your homeIt’d be nice to think that getting a standard homeowners’ insurance would simply protect you from everything all in one policy, but the reality is very different. Additional policies will cost you extra, but also offer you extra protection. Since even minor repairs or replacements tend to rack up huge bills, this is a very good thing. One of the extra policies you’ll want to have in place living in Texas, which is important to understand properly, is wind insurance. Actually, depending upon what area you live in, you are required to have it.

What is windstorm insurance?

This is an extra policy (also called windstorm, hail or hurricane coverage) that you can (or must, depending what county you live in) take out on top of your normal homeowner’s insurance policy.  This protects the structure of your home as well as the contents within your home specifically from damages that are caused by damage. This could be anything from water damage due to a wind-related weakening where water seeps in, or broken property from wind throwing it around your home or yard.

Why is windstorm insurance important?

This specific kind of additional insurance is important because a classic homeowner’s policy will not cover damage from the wind, like that of a hurricane or windstorm. This includes not only structural damage from a windstorm but any of your property (outside or inside) that is broken as a result of a wind-created weakening such as a broken window.

Another reason that windstorm insurance is important is that most people assume that it’s covered with homeowners’ or flood insurance. However, this isn’t the case and the result could mean that you are left with a large, mind-boggling bill after a severe windstorm sweeps across your county.

What does windstorm insurance protect?

Still not convinced?  Let’s break it down to see just what this extra policy add-on will offer you in protection.

It can protect other buildings on your property such as a shed or a garage. It covers appliances, furniture and clothing (as well as other contents) in your home. It also covers living expenses if your home was damaged by hail or wind and you had to relocate while the repairs were being done. Windstorm insurance also protects you from the removal of debris and other messes that can be left behind.

The good news about windstorm insurance

Many coastal areas require homeowners to carry windstorm insurance for obvious reasons. There are currently 14 coastal counties in Texas, that are designated by the Commissioner of Insurance, that require windstorm coverage. Your insurance agent or real estate agent should be able to advise you to that but you can also see more about that on the TWIA website.

The good news is that you can learn more about the specifics of windstorm from TWIA if you don’t have a personal relationship with your insurance agent. Windstorm, again, is a specific kind of insurance that focuses on windstorm coverage that is left out of classic homeowners’ insurance.

Eligibility is pretty wide, intentionally, so that no one is left out. You can apply if you have a home or two-family dwelling, a townhouse, a prefab home or a condo.  You’ll want to make sure that you consult your insurance agent, or TWIA, as you’ll have to have the right products in place for protection to be considered. These include exterior doors, impact-resistant windows, shutters and other window coverings, etc. Typically these products need to be windstorm certified by a TWIA approved inspector, so be sure yours is!

Your home is precious to you and proper protection is critical for everyone’s peace of mind.  Put that in place for yourself with a proper wind insurance policy that will guide you in the right direction. Contact Paula Smith Insurance at (832) 408-0505

Side note – should you not be able to get insured with TWIA, for some reason, be sure to check out the Texas Fair Plan Association to get further help on that.

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