How To Protect Your NJ Business With Hurricane Insurance
Dan Levenson September 13, 2016
When it comes to hurricanes, some people may not consider New Jersey a major risk area.
But that is actually far from the truth.
In fact, the state of New Jersey is four on the list of states that have the most potential for hurricane damage. So when asking the question, “Do I need hurricane insurance for my small business?” the answer is a resounding yes.
Being located on the eastern seaboard, New Jersey is a state that is extremely vulnerable to devastating storms. Hurricane Irene in 2011 and Hurricanes Ivan and Jeanne in 2004 were major storms that caused a lot of damage across the state. Perhaps the most notable example was Hurricane Sandy in 2012, which cost New Jersey businesses nearly $8.3 billion in damages.
So where does that leave you, a New Jersey small business owner, when it comes to preparing for hurricane season?
What You Need To Know About Hurricane Insurance
Hurricane insurance covers a lot of variables, but it is important to be aware of a few things when considering your options. For instance, flood insurance is usually separate and just a hurricane insurance policy alone will not typically cover your business in case of a flood.
A separate flood insurance policy will help protect you against flood damage, while a hurricane insurance policy protects against wind damage and/or subsequent damage caused by accompanying rain from above. Flooding caused by rain or storm surge flooding or water damage caused by an overflowing river or similar body of water is what is traditionally covered by flood insurance.
Bear in mind that flood insurance does not begin to cover the business until after a 30-day waiting period, so it is integral to plan in advance and not wait until a storm is eminent.
The Cost Of Hurricane Insurance For Your Business
Be aware of your deductibles with hurricane insurance simply because some policies have separate deductibles that are not part of the standard deductible for regular business insurance. It is better to know this in advance rather than it be a surprise when it comes time to use the insurance should the worst happen and you have damage from a hurricane.
According to the Insurance Information Institute, which has hurricane information by state:
Hurricane deductibles are percentage or dollar deductibles that are higher than for other perils, or causes of loss. They are calculated as a percentage of the dollar amount of coverage on the dwelling. The trigger for hurricane deductibles, or the point at which they apply, varies by company. Triggers have some common characteristics: they generally go into effect only when the National Weather Service issues a hurricane watch or warning and remain in effect for a specified amount of time after the storm has passed. The intensity of hurricanes may also affect the trigger. Hurricanes are classified on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 as the highest intensity.
It is important for you to protect your business investment. With New Jersey being a state that is highly susceptible to storms making landfall, hurricane insurance simply makes good sense. Not only will you have peace of mind, but you won’t have to depend on taking money out of your own pocket or trying to rely on federal assistance if a storm does damage your property or, in a worst case scenario, you have a total loss.