Expert Contribution

Wind driven rain and your Home Insurance

We need the rain but…

The combination of a high wind with rain is like pointing a garden hose on full blast at a window or door. Water is insidious and will find a way into the interior. The question is whether (no pun intended) your home insurance covers wind as the proximate cause of loss and the resulting seepage of the water. Our homes locally are built to withstand the element of heat so that air can flow and allow the home to breathe. We lived in Ohio for a few years and the element builders worked against there was the cold weather. You can tell that building style because when you try to close a door there is a “cushion” of air that makes you force the door shut, where in California in most areas a door can swing shut easily.

The good news is that an unnaturally high wind doesn’t occur frequently and a small amount of water can be dried up to save a rug or wooden floor. Insurance may not cover water damage if there is no external damage to the house, however if a tree limb damages the roof and water gets in, that is an easy claim. It’s just not always that clear.

What to do? 

Be prepared: a heavy downpour can overwhelm drains and gutters on your roof. Leaves and debris can build up and cause an overflow especially in rain gutters that can then run down an inside wall in your home. *Remember there is a deductible too. The remedy is simple. Clean your roof and gutters frequently (according to the number of trees nearby). Check the weather stripping on your windows and doors, avoid lost money and time by being prepared and then pray for more rain!

By William White, All State Insurance