As a responsible homeowner, it seems as though your to-do list is never-ending. There’s always another home repair or maintenance project for you to consider.
Living in Florida, though, presents even more challenges. Not only do you have to deal with hurricane damage sometimes. In addition, Florida sinkholes are no small matter to deal with.
If your home has damage from a sinkhole, you need to take action as soon as possible. There’s no need to procrastinate when it comes to sinkhole damage. Doing so could mean you risk further damage later on.
Consider the following statistic regarding United States homeowners. It indicates that the average homeowner spends one to four percent of the home’s overall value on home improvement projects every single year.
Don’t spend additional money later on because you avoided dealing with sinkhole damage. Keep reading, then, to learn everything you need to know about them.
First, What Are Sinkholes?
If you’ve never seen the ground open up and swallow something – or someone – whole, count yourself lucky. It’s an unfortunate truth that sinkholes are naturally occurring. In fact, they happen more often in developed areas as opposed to undeveloped areas.
There are two main things that cause a sinkhole: water and carbon-based bedrock. One example of carbonate rock is limestone, which is unfortunate. Limestone is of particular prevalence throughout the southern coast of the United States.
Beneath the surface of the earth, cavities form when significant water leaks down below. These cavities can be of varying sizes. The larger ones, of course, present the most danger to us on the surface.
The reason carbon-based bedrock poses a threat is that upon contact with water, they start to decay. After water sinks through the earth’s soil, it becomes acidic. Then, it causes decay in limestone or other carbon-based bedrock.
Why Are Florida Sinkholes So Common?
The combination of significant water and limestone bedrock is why Florida is so prone to sinkholes. It’s true that living in Florida means you’re already prepared to handle hurricane damage as needed. Well, that hurricane water has to go somewhere.
So, it sinks below the surface of the earth. As mentioned above, the southern coast of the United States has a major presence of limestone underground. This is true, in particular, in the hurricane-prone state of Florida.
That’s why Florida sinkholes have continued to increase in number over the years. If you’re a homeowner in Florida, it’s essential that you take note of this unfortunate trend. Keep reading to learn the warning signs a sinkhole may occur near you.
What Are The Warning Signs of Sinkholes?
Most of the sinkhole warning signs are obvious if you know what to expect. For one thing, huge cracks in the ground are a great indication that a below-the-earth cavity is starting to lose stability.
If a large crack occurs in the ground near you out of nowhere, get prepared. Stay clear of the area as much as it is feasible. It’s likely that this location is going to be the home of a sinkhole soon enough.
Another indication of a potential sinkhole is that of random pools of water. These pools of water are more than just small puddles after a big storm. Rather, these pools of water will rise from the ground without an obvious explanation.
In addition, keep an eye out for randomly slanting doors or trees. If the ground seems to be unlevel all of a sudden, a sinkhole might be the next event in the area. The good news, though, is that the resulting damages might be covered by your homeowner’s insurance.
Is Sinkhole Damage Covered by Home Insurance?
Of course, it’ll be your responsibility to do the research and determine whether sinkhole damage is covered by your insurance. Not every homeowner’s insurance policy is that all-encompassing, after all.
If you have to, don’t be afraid to seek professional guidance on the matter. Experts in insurance claims will help you navigate those finer details to ensure your rights are covered.
After all, sinkholes cost a significant amount of money throughout the United States. On average, they cost the country around $300 million every year. In other words, don’t cut corners when it comes to insurance coverage.
In fact, it might be in your best interest to invest in a homeowner’s insurance policy that does cover sinkhole damage. This is going to be especially true for residents of the state of Florida, by the way. Doing so is going to be the best way to reduce the costs of potential sinkhole damage.
Can You Take Preventative Measures Against Sinkholes?
There aren’t too many things you can do to prevent sinkholes from occurring. The major thing to remember is that the heavier the surface, the more difficult it’ll be for the underground cavities to maintain stability.
For that reason, at least try to refrain from adding too many additional square feet to your home. That way, you won’t be adding extra strain to the already precarious limestone bedrock.
Take Care of Your Home’s Damage from Sinkholes
At this point in the article, you have a thorough understanding of Florida sinkholes. It’s true that there are a lot of ins and outs to navigate when it comes to sinkhole damage. For that reason, it’s in your best interest to hire professional repair services sooner rather than later.
Still, those repair services could cost quite a bit. That’s why it’s essential that you determine whether those repairs might be covered by your insurance policy.
The good news, though, is that there are experts available to guide you through that process. You don’t have to negotiate with your insurance company all by yourself.
In fact, that’s where we can come into play. We prioritize providing our clients like you with expert guidance on navigating home insurance policies. If your home has experienced damage from a sinkhole in Florida, we’re here to help.
That’s why we encourage you to browse through the rest of our website to see how we can help you today. To start, check out more information about our expertise in sinkhole damage insurance claims.