Tag Archives: fire insurance

How climate change will effect home values

Note: although this story is from Australia is is a good reminder to revisit your home  insurance policies.

Dr Karl Mallon, director of science and systems for Sydney-based consultants Climate Risk, said Australia’s quintessential problem is that “you can build a house which is insurable tomorrow, but is wholly unsuitable 30 years down the track”.

The message follows the release by the independent Climate Council of its latest report, Super-charged storms in Australia, which argues that the nation is highly vulnerable to “storm surges associated with tropical cyclones and extra-tropical cyclones, including [more intense] east coast lows.”

Dr Mallon said that many Australians do not realise that a change in a property’s value does not occur when an extreme weather event takes place, but “when the market realises the event will occur and revalues the house…it’s the homeowner which is the sitting duck in all this.”

He pointed to a “disconnect,” between banks, government planning and the insurance industry, which is leaving Australian homeowners vulnerable to “climate change foreclosure”.

“There are potentially millions and millions of dollars of revaluation that has to happen in the property sector and it’s not going to be pretty. We could end up with suburbs where there is a wholesale collapse in value,” he said, highlighting “erosion, actions of the sea, landslip and ground contraction,” as some of the main impacts which are still largely uninsurable.

“It’s the banks who probably need to lead the charge…to sit down with insurers and planners and say, ‘Will you start providing insurance on this?’.”

read more at: http://www.smh.com.au/business/consumer-affairs/sydney-homeowners-face-properties-being-reduced-in-value-because-of-climate-change-climate-risk-group-says-20161115-gsq5mu.html

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San Diego – Better fire protection may lower insurance rates

organization that weighs fire risks has determined that San Diego’s backcountry is safer after years of investments, a declaration that may make it possible for property owners in the county’s rural stretches to buy fire insurance for the first time or to pay lower premiums on existing policies.

The improved rating from the Insurance Service Office came after the Board of Supervisors created the San Diego County Fire Authority in 2008 and spent hundreds of millions of dollars to improve fire protection in 1.5 million acres of the backcountry after major fires in 2003 and 2007.

The county put various fire agencies under one command, and added more career firefighters, staffing, equipment, training and communication systems. The investments cut response times by 30%, the county said.

The fire protection and the improved rating is a big deal for people who live in rural parts of the county, according to Supervisor Dianne Jacob.

“What this means is not only can they get fire insurance, it lowers the cost of fire insurance in much of this area,” she said.

The $350 million worth of improved rural fire protection is also important for people who live in more populated areas, she added.

read more at: http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-san-diego-wildfire-risk-20160909-snap-story.html

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Documents that Should be in Your Distaster Kit

We are coming up to wildfire season in the West but  wild fires can happen at anytime of the year. 

Documents and Information for kit:

  • Insurance company’s contact numbers for claims or customer service.
  • Copy of your insurance policies and declarations page for your reference.
  • Receipts for any major purchase.
  • Photos and videos of your valuable possessions or a written inventory.
  • Copies of passports, driver’s license, and credit card numbers.
  • Bank account information.
  • Emergency numbers.
  • Copies of prescriptions.

Some experts recommend putting copies of these documents in a safe deposit box but after the recent blackout these may not be accessible for some time.  Leave with friends or family in a different town or if you have a computer and have a back-up off site this information should be in your file.

For more information go to: http://www.fema.gov/areyouready/

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