Tree removal a loophole in storm insurance coverage - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Tree removal a loophole in storm insurance coverage

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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) - Severe weather has left its mark on the Coulee Region this summer, and the most recent line of storms may have served as the exclamation point.

Dozens of trees lined the streets of La Crosse afterward, prompting Mayor Tim Kabat and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker to tour the damage left behind.

The worst part now for homeowners is paying for it all, some out of their own pockets.

Tree removal is one aspect of insurance coverage that doesn't get a lot of attention, mainly because it's simply too expensive. Insurance agent Sherry Noble said Monday many properties have too many trees for insurance companies to justify paying for the removal of them.

"It's just when you're talking about if you live on five acres you could have lost how many trees?" she said. "Now are we going to pay to replant those trees plus haul them all away? There may be a small amount of coverage for the debris removal, but there's not going to be coverage for every one of those trees. It would just be impossible."

If a tree falls on your home, you're covered under your insurance, she said, but the tree removal fee might not be. It all depends on your coverage policy. Noble urges everyone to read up on their policy, or talk with their insurance agent.

No damage cost estimates had been released as of Monday afternoon. Noble estimated her affected clients experienced between $3,000 and $5,000 in damage on average.

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