As the debate rages between the beauty of our island’s trees and the danger they pose to our homes, it appears we are not considering a third, very interested party: the insurance companies that write our homeowners’ policies.
I firmly believe that renewing or purchasing new coverage will require a “tree inspection” to identify trees or limbs that could potentially damage the structure. Further, getting that policy written will require removal of the potentially dangerous tree or limb at the homeowner’s expense. As Hurricane Mathew pointed out, some homes are surrounded by potentially dangerous trees and removing them will spark a battle between the town or private communities and the need for insurance.
Myself and a neighbor have already experienced this with Occidental Insurance Company as it required some tree mitigation before writing our policies. It should be noted that neither of us suffered any tree-related damage to our homes.
Hilton Head Island