HUDSON, Fla. (WFLA) — Dean Pannasch dreamed of owning a waterfront home to give him easy access to chase his fishing hobby.
Idalia brought a nightmare, but as her storm surge approached the inside of the property Pannasch bought in May, the disabled Army veteran was not worried.
“I had flood insurance,” Pannasch said. “I remembered it was paid for at the closing. That’s what they told me. Someone dropped the ball.”
Idalia’s storm surge caused tens of thousands of dollars in damage to the flooring, kitchen and the bottom two feet of sheet rock on the walls of the home.
There was also damage to irreplaceable mementos, including one box of items from Pannasch’s daughter.
“I don’t even have the heart to go through it,” Pannasch said. “I don’t have the heart.”
The shock got worse when he found out the home was not covered by flood insurance.
“I served 20 years in the military. I busted my ass,” Pannasch said, fighting his emotions. “I wanted this. I’ve wanted this since I was a child. My dad and I fished. I wanted to live on the water.”
The closing statement referenced $4,718 in costs, “including $2,378 in other costs.” A document from the flood insurance broker stated $2,378 was the “amount paid” for a 12-month policy with May 23, 2023 at the “effective date.”
Pannasch said he had no reason to believe he was not covered, and no one involved with his closing had any answers when he called after he found out there was no flood insurance on the home.
“And everybody’s just looking at each other like, where’s the check, where’s the check, where’s the check?” Pannasch said. “No answers.”
Representatives from title company and original lender said they would look into what happened. No one has responded yet from the insurance company.
Pannasch said without help, he will try to pay for repairs on a fixed income, forcing him to repair what he can afford.
“They’re all just pointing fingers, and it’s just going in a circle. No one wants to raise their hand,” Pannasch said. “There’s nothing else I can do. Now, I have to look at it and decide do I buy an oven or do I buy flooring.”