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Tips To Protect Your Home, Property In Case Of A Hurricane

CORAL GABLES (CBS4) - The 2011 Hurricane Season is predicted to be an active one.

While the season may not technically start until June 1st, there are things you can do now to start making sure you are ready.

The advice is coming from Daniel Odess, President of East Coast Public Adjusters. People hire public adjusters to negotiate with insurance claims. Some studies show, as experts, they can get more money for your claim.

The first tip includes taking hundreds of photographs of your home.

"Making sure not only the content is included in those photographs, but also the walls floors and ceilings," said Odess.

Another helpful tool is to inspect your home before a storm, something homeowners can hire professionals to do.

"We can have some historical information to go back on," said Odess.

Homeowners should also make a list of all repair workers that people may need after a storm.

As far as the outside of your home, no matter how new or old, check windows and doors for any cracks.

"What we are really concerned about is the caulk and the sealant along the edges of the windows," said Odess.

Most important of all, ahead of any major rain storms, people should bag their insurance policy and all important documents.

"One copy keep with you and other copy leave it at your office," said Odess.

The advice will be helpful when it is time to file an insurance claim.

"They don't have a crystal ball. They do not know what you owned. They do not know what it cost," said Jorge Ramallo, who works with insurance companies.

And while public insurance adjusters can be useful, they charge a fee. Florida law limits their compensation to only 20 percent of the amount of money your insurance company gives you from your claim. If you collect nothing, then your public adjuster doesn't get paid.

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