Hailstorms leave North Texas with more than $1.5 billion in damages

A recent estimate found this week’s hailstorm that hit Collin County caused more than $300 million in damages. The latest storm that hit Wylie and parts of Plano isn’t going to be the most expensive in North Texas but does push us well over $1.5 billion in hail costs in less than four weeks time.        

Between the broken windows, A/C units and battered roof, it will be a while before Wylie homeowner Michelle Schupbach's house is whole again.

“We have an adjustor coming out Thursday so we are just now starting really,” said Shupbach. “We have over 20 holes in our roof and we've had them covered. But that's basically it.”

Shupbach is not sure what repairs will cost but expects it's going to take at least $50-70 thousand. And the Shupbach family is just one of many families facing major repairs.

“Everything facing north in Wylie has just been trashed,” said Joel Beckman with BCC Roofing & Storm Repair. “These things actually got damage to the brick.”

The Insurance Council of Texas toured the damage on Friday. It estimates the price tag of Monday's storm, the third major hail event to hit North Texas since March 17, is around $300 million.

“Of the three storms, this probably was the largest hail,” said Mark Hanna with the council. “And probably did the most damage but to a smaller footprint.”

That's on top of an estimated $700 million in damages on March 23 when large hail battered Plano. Six days before that, Tarrant County was hit hard to the tune of $600 million. The latest storm puts the overall total in North Texas at around $1.6 billion, and it's still early in the spring storm season.

“It's a pretty bad omen, you know,” said Hanna. “You just don't know what to expect.”

State Farm, Texas' largest insurer, says it has more than 65,000 hail claims in the last month -- more than it had for all of 2015. But it insists it’s too soon to say if this year’s terrible storms will impact premiums in the future.

“It's not one storm or season or series of seasons that really set rates,” said Chris Pilcic with State Farm. “There is a catastrophe component but that's calculated over years, not one season.”

What North Texas can predict is a long path ahead to undo the damage of these powerful storms.

“You have to be patient and just thank God that everybody is still ok,” said Shupbach. “It seems like everybody is ok in the neighborhood. So that's the good thing.”

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