In the midst of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, it’s not hard to envision what condition your HOA might be in after a natural disaster. While California isn’t in a hurricane zone, it is a major earthquake zone. Take, for example, the major Northridge, CA earthquake in 1994. Homes and businesses were broken down to the studs, leaving many to wonder how they’d be able to move forward.
Whether a fire, flood, or other peril caused by a natural disaster affected your HOA, do you have the resources and the plan in place to recover? In a recent post, we explored the real consequences of such a scenario as most Houston Homeowners didn’t have the right insurance to help them recover. With that in mind, the steps you take immediately following a catastrophic event is critical. First, start by filing a claim with your LA Earthquake Insurance company. Next, heed the following advice.
First, inspect damages.
According to Spectrum Association Management:
- Document each item that has been damaged with photographs. This will prevent any disputes about proving what’s considered a loss.
- Your Association’s insurance (or your personal carrier) will likely cover hail-damage losses. And if the hail penetrated the roof or broke out windows, any water damage from driven rain will likely be covered as well; however…
- You and your Association have a duty to protect your property from future damages. This means that if the hail broke your windows and rain comes in anytime after the storm, your insurance will likely NOT cover that water damage because the idea is you should have protected your property.
Time is of the essence in these scenarios, especially if the property’s roof or windows have been damaged, exposing them to the elements. Make the necessary repairs immediately to prevent further damage. This might mean buying a tarp or boarding up windows temporarily until the insurance claim can be paid out.
Plan for the future.
After such a huge catastrophe and seeing how many homes and businesses have been lost, take an inventory now of tasks you can complete now to make your business more prepared for an earthquake. For example, consider important documents, heavy furniture, wall mounted items, and employee training for surviving an earthquake. Put yourself in their shoes, what would have done differently?
About Scott Litman Insurance Agency
At Scott Litman Insurance Agency, we are dedicated to protecting HOAs like yours. We have a unique understanding of the industry and the common risk exposures that you face in your daily operations. In fact, we find that 90% of the policies we review are missing coverages that violate the Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions (CC&R), exposing the board, HOA and management to lawsuits – which is why our comprehensive policies are tailored to meet your specific needs at competitive prices. For more information about our products, contact our experts today at (818) 879-5980 ext. 201, or fill out our online form.