Streets that turn into raging rivers and take everything with them, cellars that fill up, houses that collapse – and many deaths. The deep Bernd has taken its toll. The search for missing persons continues, residents are starting to clean up. And the question arises as to how much money comes from insurance for damaged buildings, household effects and broken cars.
Who pays for damage to the house, apartment and personal effects?
Here, home insurance or household inventory insurance is the right interlocutor. The policy only covers damage caused by storms and hail. “In addition, it also pays for damage or destruction by fire, damage from surge voltage by lightning, implosion, explosion or damage to tap water”, explains Bianca Boss of the Association of Policyholders. Floods caused by precipitation or rising rivers, such as those caused by Bernd, are not covered. To do this, owners of houses and apartments must purchase additional coverage for damage caused by natural forces. In addition to flooding, it also covers damage caused by landslides, subsidence, snow pressure, eddies, avalanches, earthquakes or volcanic eruptions.
What is the situation with natural risk insurance?
In no case has everyone taken out a basic damage guarantee. In North Rhine-Westphalia, 47% of buildings are secured, which places the state slightly above the German average of 46%. In Rhineland-Palatinate, on the other hand, it is only 37%. “Insuring a property against extreme weather conditions costs about as much per year as comprehensive insurance for a car,” explains Peter Schnitzler of Munich Re’s Ergo branch. of existence. ” Renovating or even building a new house costs hundreds of thousands of dollars, sometimes even millions. Consumer advocates, however, criticize that people living in areas particularly prone to flooding have to either accept very high premiums or high deductibles – or not even get the protection. After extensive flood damage, there is a regular discussion on the introduction of compulsory insurance against natural hazards. The insurers refuse. The GDV trade association claims that 99 percent of buildings can also be insured on a voluntary basis.
What about the damage to the car?
Damage to the car is covered if the owner has taken out partial or full casco insurance. In addition to the direct impacts of floods, snow and roof avalanches, lightning strikes, hail and storms, damage from bricks and branches falling on the car is also insured.
How to behave correctly in the event of a claim?
In the event of storm damage, it is important to act quickly and take emergency measures to limit the damage. Those affected should seal broken windows or bring household items from the flooded basement to safety. “But you shouldn’t put yourself in danger,” says Boss, consumer advocate. “Your own safety and integrity always comes first, of course.” Several deaths of Bernd are also to be deplored because people wanted to secure their cellars and drowned in the process. Once the situation has calmed down, the injured party must immediately contact their insurer and report the damage. “Take pictures, document the damage and make a list of damaged items,” Boss said. “Also ask your insurer what action to take next. “