Thunderstorms are a regular occurrence in many states that can result in serious property damage. According to the Insurance Information Institute, thunderstorms with lightning caused around $950 million in property damage in 2022 alone. 
Thunderstorms can also go hand in hand with other costly and dangerous natural hazards, like tornadoes, hail storms, and lighting strikes. We broke down the facts and figures surrounding thunderstorms nationwide so homeowners can know what to look out for, and what types of home insurance coverage they need to ensure they’re protected.
Thunderstorms by the numbers
$30 billion - The amount the insurance industry paid in property claims for thunderstorms from 2009 to 2011 
$22 billion - The cost of damage caused by hail storms in the U.S. in 2017 — the worst hail year on record 
$20 billion - Total insured losses due to thunderstorms in 2019 
16 million - Estimated number of thunderstorms that take place globally per year 
2,000 - Number of lightning strike injuries in Florida over the last 50 years, the state with the most lightning strike injuries on record 
10% - Percentage of thunderstorms in the U.S. per year that are classified as severe 
30 - Average number of minutes a thunderstorm lasts 
26 - Average number of fatalities due to lightning strikes in the U.S. from 2010 to 2019 
Thunderstorms by state
Some states experience far more thunderstorms than others, specifically states in the southeastern region of the country. Florida experiences the most thunderstorms by far, with some areas of the state experiencing more than 105 “thunder days” per year. 
The warm air from the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Coast make these states more vulnerable to thunderstorms, as well as hurricanes and tropical storms.
States in the Southwestern region of the country, like New Mexico and Colorado, also experience their fair shares of thunderstorms, with parts of each state experiencing 50 to 80 thunder days per year.
Midwestern and East Coast states experience similar amounts of thunderstorms, with different states in both regions experiencing anywhere from 20 to 60 thunder days a year.
Does homeowners insurance cover thunderstorms?
Homeowners insurance does cover damage from thunderstorms, as well as lightning strikes, tornadoes, and hail storms. Homeowners insurance exists to protect your home, personal property, and assets from risks like bad weather.
If your home or personal property are damaged by a thunderstorm or hazards that typically occur with one, like lightning or hail, your homeowners insurance can help pay to replace or repair your damaged property. If a thunder and lightning storm results in a fire in your home, your homeowners insurance would also cover the damage.
However, if a thunderstorm results in rain damage, your homeowners insurance may cover it, but only if you can prove that the thunderstorm was the direct cause for the rain getting in.
Let's take a look at an example:
Say a thunderstorm brings in strong winds and damages your roof leading to rain getting in. You'd be covered for any damage that results from your damaged roof.
But if you have an existing hole in your roof or if it’s aging and rain seeps in during a thunderstorm, you likely won't be covered for any water damage.
How to protect your home from thunderstorm damage
Although homeowners insurance does cover you from thunderstorm damage, there are proactive steps you can take to properly secure your home from the risk of severe thunderstorms.
If you live in an area that is prone to lightning and thunderstorms, consider installing a lightning protection system and surge protector devices. A lightning protection system can redirect lightning into the ground instead of it flowing through your home’s gas system or electrical wiring.
It’s also smart to keep your roof well maintained to avoid severe damage. You may want to consider installing storm resistant shutters, windows, and doors as well. By taking these proactive wind mitigation steps to fortify your home, your insurance company will typically reward you with a discount on your premiums — most insurers offer wind mitigation and new roof discounts.