A new survey from COUNTRY Financial reveals a lack of preparedness among Americans for extreme weather and natural disasters.
A recent survey conducted by COUNTRY Financial reveals a lack of preparedness of many Americans for extreme weather and natural disasters. The survey found that 40% of respondents have taken no proactive measures to prepare for potential weather-related emergencies, like wildfires, leaving them vulnerable to the unpredictable forces of nature.
The survey also shed light on the concerns of homeowners regarding potential damage to their properties. A worrying half of homeowners surveyed don’t think they have the funds to cover repairs in the event of future home damage.
“These concerns are valid. Homeowners have experienced significant loss due to extreme weather and wildfire the past couple of years, and rising construction costs continue to be a reality,” said Brian Tausan, COUNTRY Financial representative in Denver, Colorado. “If your home was destroyed, and you are underinsured, it could devastate your savings too. Maintaining your emergency fund is essential.”
Homeowners can take several precautions to protect their financial stability if severe weather or a natural disaster should damage their property. This may include simply reading their policy.
“One of the smartest things you can do as a homeowner is to review and update your insurance coverage. Many policyholders haven’t updated their coverages to protect against rising building costs,” Tausan explains. “Check to see if your policy has an Additional Replacement Cost endorsement which includes the cost of labor and construction materials, with no limit, and accounts for inflation.”
Other steps homeowners can take to protect themselves include taking photos or video inventory of their personal property and scheduling valuables such as art collections, jewelry, or expensive rugs on their policy. Additionally, homeowners who have remodeled or made additions to their homes should update their policies accordingly. Having an idea of where you could live if you were displaced for some time is also important.
“What I worry about for people in Maui who lost their home is the Additional Living Expense (ALE). The rebuild process could take years to complete and the ALE could be used up quickly,” said Tausan. “As a precaution, you could adjust your ALE to slightly higher than the current rent in the area for 24 or more months.”
As unpredictable weather events continue to affect regions nationwide, increasing awareness and preparedness can help homeowners secure their homes and financial well-being. Since every situation is different, connecting with your insurance agent and following these steps can ensure you’re prepared to weather future events, should disaster strike your community.
For more information please visit www.countryfinancial.com
About COUNTRY Financial®
COUNTRY Financial is a marketing name for COUNTRY Life Insurance Company®, COUNTRY Mutual Insurance Company® and their respective subsidiaries, located in Bloomington, IL. COUNTRY Financial serves about one million households and businesses throughout the United States and offers a wide range of insurance and financial products and services.
Visit COUNTRY Financial on X (Formerly Twitter) @HelloCountry, on Facebook @COUNTRYFinancial and on Instagram @countryfinancial.
About the COUNTRY Financial Security Index®
Since 2007, the COUNTRY Financial Security Index has measured Americans' sentiments of their personal financial security. The Index also delves deeper into individual personal finance topics to better inform Americans about the issues impacting their finances. The COUNTRY Financial Security Index was created by COUNTRY Financial and is compiled by Ipsos an independent research firm. Surveys were conducted using Ipsos' KnowledgePanel®, a national, probability-based panel designed to be representative of the general population and includes responses from approximately 1,330 U.S. adults for national surveys. The margin of sampling error for a survey based on this many interviews is approximately +/- 3.2 percentage points at the 95% confidence level.
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