What is a wind/hail deductible?
Like a standard deductible, a wind/hail deductible is the amount of money you’re responsible for paying out of pocket when you make an insurance claim. However, a wind/hail deductible only applies to damage caused by:
Wind-driven rain events.
These deductibles, sometimes called severe convective storm deductibles, are most common in areas that are at high risk for wind or hail damage, like the states located in Tornado Alley, the Great Plains, or the Midwest. However, now that Tornado Alley appears to be shifting, people in more states may see wind/hail deductibles on their policies.
Note: When a loss results from a storm system that the National Hurricane Center names, a hurricane deductible may apply, depending on your state and your policy’s language.
How wind/hail deductibles work
In the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew in 1992, insurers widely began to adopt hurricane deductibles in an effort to keep insurance affordable and accessible and spread out risk. The additional deductible improves the insurance company’s ability to pay claims when a catastrophe hits a large number of policyholders.
Wind/hail deductibles follow this same concept, but are designed for areas of the US that see frequent severe windstorms and tornadoes. For example, if a hailstorm damages your roof, you’d be responsible for paying your wind/hail deductible when your insurance provider covers your claim.
Wind/hail deductibles are typically calculated either as a flat dollar amount or a percentage of your dwelling coverage (also called Coverage A). Let’s say, for example, that you have $300,000 worth of coverage for your dwelling with a 1% wind/hail deductible. That means the amount of the wind or hail damage you’re responsible for equals 1% of $300,000, or $3,000.
On the other hand, let’s say you choose a flat-dollar wind/hail deductible of $2,500. That means you’re responsible for $2,500 before your insurance policy kicks in to cover the rest of the costs.
How much are wind/hail deductibles?
Wind/hail deductible limits vary by provider. Depending on the state and product, we usually offer both flat dollar and percentage options so you can find the right deductible to fit your needs. Our typical deductible limits are:
Flat dollar amount: $500, $1,000, $2,500, $5,000, $7,500, $10,000.
Percentage of Coverage A: 1%, 2%, 3%, 4%, 5%, 10%.
Not every policy comes with a wind/hail deductible, so be sure to read yours closely or ask your Kin representative.
How is a wind/hail deductible different from a standard or hurricane deductible?
Wind/hail deductibles are similar to both standard deductibles and hurricane deductibles, but each is triggered by different events. Let’s look at some examples to illustrate that. Say your roof damage was caused by:
An electrical fire. A standard deductible, also called an “all other perils” (AOP) deductible, covers most of the events, or perils, that might cause property loss, including fires and theft.
A hurricane or named storm. Hurricane deductibles are usually triggered when you experience a loss during a storm named by the National Hurricane Center, but this can vary by state.
A tornado. This is when a wind/hail deductible may apply to your claim. Wind/hail deductibles may also apply when hail, wind-driven rain, and other similar events cause damage to your property.
Your policy may have multiple types of wind damage deductibles, just one, or none at all. It typically depends on where you live.
What should my wind/hail deductible be?
Whatever type of deductible you’re choosing, the right one depends largely on your personal circumstances. People sometimes choose a higher deductible because it often translates to lower premiums. However, you want to opt for an amount you can comfortably afford if you have to make a claim.
The key is to choose an amount that’s low enough that you won’t be overly burdened if you have to file a claim, but not so low that the premiums on your policy become overly expensive.
What are the benefits of a wind/hail deductible?
Simply put, wind/hail deductibles keep home insurance more accessible and affordable. By adopting a separate deductible for higher risk scenarios, insurers can continue to provide vital coverage for those living in areas that see frequent severe storms and tornadoes.