Hurricane WARNINGS – Tampa Florida
Another Tropical Depression is upon us, the 5th named event for this 2013 Hurricane Season.
Erin is being closely watched in the Atlantic right now, but is not forecast to bring anything other than some increased chances of heavy rain to the Tampa Bay Area, the middle of next week.
As most Floridians know August and September are historically the PEAK seasons for activity in storms that could develop into hurricanes. The 2013 season predictions were just recently revised last week by NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). They now believe that the Atlantic hurricane season will see as many as (five) major hurricanes at Category 3 or above. This is the 2nd revision DOWN this year by NOAA. Our average season can bring as many as 12 tropical storms with as many as six hurricanes and 3 of those becoming major hurricanes.
This recent revelation, as well as the downgrading of what was a tropical storm to depression (Erin) is good news to homeowners of Florida and more specifically the Greater Tampa Bay Area.
One of the issues that home owners have to be aware of with regards to hurricane season is what effect this has on home owners insurance and specifically, Wind Mitigation in the event of damage to your home by a Storm or Hurricane in Florida.
Back in 2008 we wrote an article about the My Safe Florida Home Program that offered a Free Wind Mitigation Report to Home Owners. The My Safe Florida Home Program assisted Floridians to identify how they could strengthen their homes against hurricanes and to reduce hurricane damage exposure in our state. The program had proven to save hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars on home owners insurance. However, it went the way of the dinosaur last year, the program was repealed in July 2012.
What this means now is that Home Owners have to pay for this inspection themselves. There is still some very good information available to home owners in the form of the Wind Mitigation Booklet from Florida Disaster.org . It’s interesting that this booklet is NOT in the listed links in the center of the page either. They make you hunt for it. There is a small link in the lower right corner with a small thumbnail image of the report. No worries just use the link – I provided in the beginning of this paragraph for the download pdf link ^.
So whats the big deal with having a Wind Mitigation report ? It’s the potential savings on your Home Owners Insurance that is one of the the major factors you should consider in obtaining this report, the other is Safety of your Family and Home Investment (in no particular order). First check the booklet out and then call your realtor for a recommendation for a Local Inspector. Also be sure to check with your Insurance Company on any additional requirements they may have.