Know your insurance coverage

REVIEW POLICIES NOW: Make sure your insurance policy provides the coverage you need and will remain in force through the storm season. If you have any doubts, ask your agent.

THE INSURANCE BOX: Insurance companies have an imaginary box drawn over a map of Florida and its waters. Once a storm enters that box, regardless of whether it’s projected to hit land, insurance companies won’t write policies until the storm dissipates or leaves the zone.

LAST RESORT: If you can’t find coverage, there’s always Citizens Property Insurance Corp. It is the state-created insurer of last resort in Florida and can usually provide coverage when private insurers can’t or won’t. Check out or contact the Florida Market Assistance Program at (800) 524-9023 for help finding coverage.

TWO COVERAGES: Wind and storm coverage is different from flood insurance. Make sure you have both, particularly if you live in a flood-prone area, which about 80 percent of Florida’s 17 million residents do. For information on the federal government’s flood insurance program, visit

CONTACT NUMBERS: If you are forced to leave your home, make sure to contact your agent or insurance company and leave a number where you can be contacted.

TAKE PICTURES: Document the contents of your home thoroughly either with photographs or a video recorder. Photograph any storm damage and keep receipts for any temporary repairs to the home.

INSURANCE REVIEW: Don’t make extensive repairs or throw out damaged furniture or other items until a claims adjuster has been able to assess the damage.

Contact numbers

State Farm Insurance: (800) 732-5246; Allstate Floridian Insurance: (800) 547-8676; Nationwide Insurance: (800) 421-3535; USAA: (800) 531-8222; Citizens Property Insurance: (800) 411-CPIC; Travelers of Florida: (800) 252-4633; Progressive: (800) 776-4737; Mercury: (800) 987-6000; National Flood Insurance Program: (800) 427-4661