Is it too late to insure your home?

Is it too late to insure your home?

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - With all of this uncertainty in the storm system and hurricane season already underway, there's one important question: are you insured?

A lot of homeowners don't think about insurance policies until the potential hurricane or serious storm is knocking on their front door.

"They're going to find out very quickly, they can't buy a policy once that storm enters the Gulf of Mexico," said State Farm Insurance Agent and Senator Ronnie Johns.

He says most major insurance agencies will not write new business until 24-48 hours after the storm has headed inland or after it dissipates.

Allstate, Geico, and the Firm of Louisiana Property and Casualty also say they will not write new policies once there is a named hurricane in the Gulf.

Johns says he still gets those last-minute calls.

"We actually start getting calls once the news reports there's a storm out there," said Johns. 

As of right now, Johns says they have not gotten word on whether they have to stop writing new policies, but it could happen soon.

"It's something people need to watch closely for the next few days and if they are looking to buy homeowners insurance in the next few days I would say buy it quickly," said Johns.

If you already have a policy, make sure you know what it covers. Johns also wants to caution you to make sure you don't need to renew it.

"Make sure that premium is paid timely," said Johns. "Most policies have a grace period, but if your renewal is coming up in the next few days or so, go and pay it do it ahead of time. Make sure there is absolutely no question you have coverage."

A big misconception is that flood damage is covered by the typical homeowner policy and it isn't.

"You can buy it at any point," said Johns. "The storm can be one day out and you can go out and buy a flood insurance policy but it has a 30 day waiting period."

That's standard across the nation because it is a federal policy administered by FEMA.

"Whether there's a storm out there or not a storm, there's a waiting period and you're a little out of luck if you want to buy flood insurance," said Johns. 

Whatever the policy, just make sure you are prepared for anything.

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