Insurer urges Sydney and Central Coast storm victims to report damage

Those affected by the weekend’s torrential rain and storms should report damage to their insurer and stay safe when they return home, GIO has advised.

Stormy weather wreaked havoc in Sydney, the Central Coast in NSW and parts of Queensland over the weekend, causing hundreds of house evacuations and road closures.

GIO spokesperson Stephen Bell advised impacted customers to lodge claims immediately if they haven’t already for a swifter claim.

“We also urge people to listen to local authorities in terms of whether areas are deemed safe, and beware of any fallen power lines, asbestos, broken glass and mould,” he said.  

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Savage storms broke roofs, flooded properties and uprooted trees, causing home claims to account for the majority of those received by the insurer.  

“Our teams are already arranging make-safe repairs, temporary accommodation and emergency funds for customers who have been severely impacted by the weekend’s weather...The sooner we’re notified, the sooner we can help,” said Bell.

Big bank NAB has announced it will offer relief packages to impacted customers and communities across NSW.

“Our thoughts are with people who have been affected by flooding through isolation or property damage,” said NAB state retail manager, Irene Rowlands.

“We are here to support all NAB customers and the wider community. Anyone who needs assistance or advice can contact us so we can discuss their circumstances and work out the best way to help.”

Such help will include credit card and personal loan relief and suspending home loan repayments where appropriate. For more information call NAB Assist on 1800 701 599.

Tips for a safer return home and effective home and contents insurance claim:

  • Air out your property by opening all the windows and carrying soaked items out to dry.
  • Photograph the damage to support your claim. GIO’s tip is to snap the contents of your fridge. Sounds strange but you may be eligible to claim spoilage if you were affected by a power outage.
  • Take plenty of detailed notes on damaged items, including brand names and model numbers to submit with the claim.
  • Do not switch the electricity back on unless your local power company has deemed it safe for you to do so.
  • Remember, not all home and contents insurance covers damage caused by storms. If your insurance hasn’t covered you this time, consider switching to a more comprehensive type to safeguard your property and valuables if it ever happens again. Weigh up your options via Mozo’s home insurance hub.