As Hurricane Rita barrels toward the Texas coast the American Insurance Association (AIA) offered the following tips to assist consumers and hurricane victims in protecting their homes and recovering from the storm as quickly as possible.
Make a current inventory. List the items you own. Photograph or videotape each room and the exterior of your home, if possible. List item serial numbers when available.
Safeguard your records. Keep insurance policies and your inventory in a safe deposit box or other secure spot. Accurate records speed up claims processing and can help prove tax-deductible, uninsured losses. Keep copies of your bank statements and credit cards to assist with determining living expenses.
Protect your property. Protect windows, doors and sliding glass doors with shutters or plywood. Move your car into a garage or other shelter. Secure boats and trailers. Move loose items such as lawn furniture and lawn equipment indoors or under cover and tie down items that cannot be easily moved. Unplug appliances and electronic equipment. Make sure your address is visible from the street so emergency workers can find your home. Bring pets indoors.
Listen to authorities. If local authorities recommend or mandate evacuations, follow those instructions immediately.
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