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9/10/2012 - III encourages homeowners to 'Know Your Plan'


A new smartphone app can improve preparedness.

Property insurance experts often caution homeowners to expect the best but prepare for the worst, as a weather disaster can happen at any time, causing a tremendous amount of damage. With family and work responsibilities taking up much of people's time, the effectiveness of those preparations tends to be limited.

With this in mind, the Insurance Information Institute has recently released a mobile application that homeowners can download to their iPhone or smartphone.

The app, called "Know Your Plan," is full of important information that can help homeowners prepare for nature's most catastrophic scenarios, such as earthquakes, wildfires, tornadoes and severe winter weather.

In addition to providing consumers with a checklist of the things they should have at the ready if an incident occurs, it also allows individuals to chart their progress as they gather the resources needed to ensure their family is sufficiently protected.

Robert Hartwig, economist and president of the III, noted that the app couldn't come at a better time, as insurers and homeowners have been hard hit in recent years.

"Over the past decade, insurers paid nearly $250 billion in claims to millions of victims of disasters all across the United States," said Hartwig. "In an era when the number and cost of catastrophes is clearly on the rise, this app is a timely, easy-to-use solution that can help speed the repair, rebuilding and recovery process."

Though 2012 may still be a few months away from completion, the year will likely be remembered for limited precipitation, as large swaths of the country saw minimal snowfall in the winter and significant drought in the summer. Reports from the U.S. Drought Monitor indicate that more than half of the U.S. experienced at least moderate levels of drought through the first two thirds of the year, affecting as much as 87% of the country's corn crop.

For more information on the app, click here


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