Storm damage? Here are tips from an insurance expert

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The nor'easter that hit on Wednesday left even more damage in a region already reeling from a powerful storm just days before.

We talked to one expert who had some tips for navigating the insurance process. First, she said, don't try to attempt repairs yourself.

"Obviously, if there's danger to yourself, your family, or other portions of your home you're going to have to take action to protect yourself and your property, but if you take unnecessary steps to make permanent repairs to your home without going through the process with your insurer that can result in a claims denial," said Jessica Altman, Pennsylvania's acting insurance commissioner.

She warns that natural disasters can be a magnet for dishonest contractors.

"We always want to make sure you're working with reputable individuals, that you make sure that they're appropriately licensed," she said.

Experts also advise that you ask a lot of questions of your insurance provider and any contractor you hire.

And ahead of the next storm, review your insurance policy, and examine the trees on your property.

Get them trimmed or removed before severe weather strikes again.

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