Colorado drops from top 10 states in insurance claims in 2013 |

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Colorado drops from top 10 states in insurance claims in 2013

The top 10 states with the most wind/hail State Farm claims in 2013:

Texas 42,000

Illinois 26,000

Georgia 25,000

Oklahoma 17,000

Minnesota 15,000

Indiana 15,000

Louisiana 14,000

Ohio 14,000

Mississippi 13,000

Nebraska 12,000

Preparing your home, preparing your family for wind and hail — tips from State Farm

High winds due to thunderstorms, tornadoes and other weather events cause millions — and sometimes billions — of dollars in property damage each year. Roofs are frequently damaged in high wind and hail events.

» If you are indoors when a storm with large hailstones strikes, stay there. Because hail can shatter windows, close your drapes, blinds or window shades to prevent the wind from blowing broken glass inside. Stay away from skylights and doors.

» If weather conditions are prime for hail storms, pull cars, boats, RVs, lawn and patio furniture into a covered area.

» Good tree pruning can prevent many problems. Prompt removal of diseased, damaged, or dead plant parts helps reduce the possibility of future storm damage.

» When building or remodeling, consider impact-resistant roofing to reduce hail damage to your home. State Farm currently offers insurance premium discounts to homes with qualifying impact-resistant roofing products in 26 states and one Canadian province.

The number of insurance claims paid by State Farm Insurance in Colorado last year fell nearly 41 percent from 2012, dropping Colorado from the list of the top 10 states with the most claims for the first time in years, State Farm spokeswoman Angela Thorpe said Tuesday.

“Colorado has experienced severe weather resulting in thousands of claims year, after year, after year,” Thorpe said.

Windsor’s August hailstorm pelted cars and roofs last year and the 2008 tornado racked up $193.5 million in damage, according to the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association.

In 2012, State Farm had about 16,000 wind and hail claims reported by Coloradans, but in 2013 saw a sharp decrease of only about 9,500 claims, Thorpe said.

Despite the drop in the number of claims, damage caused by wind and hail cost State Farm policyholders more than $3 billion in 2013, Thorpe said.

“Whether that’s due to a less challenging year for our customers in terms of the severe weather events in 2013 or that the damage didn’t exceed their deductible and they didn’t make a claim — one thing is for sure — over the past several years we’ve seen positive uptake in the number of our customers opting for impact-resistant roofing,” Thorpe said.

She said between 2012 and 2013, State Farm saw a 16 percent increase in the number of customers choosing impact-resistant roofing. After the tornado in 2008, she said the company began to see more customers opting for the bolstered roofing.

“Go back a few more years during particularly severe weather in 2009 and 2010, we replaced a lot of roofs and saw a significant increase in customers opting for (impact-resistant roofing),” Thorpe said.

She said homeowners that choose the impact-resistant roofing are able to get as much as a 28 percent discount on their homeowners insurance.

“We’re hopeful our customers continue opting for IRR when building a home or replacing their roof,” Thorpe said. “Ultimately fewer claims can influence rates favorably for our customers by taking loss mitigation steps.”

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