Filing a home insurance claim is often the result of some unfortunate event happening to your most precious asset – your home. The process can sometimes feel overwhelming, especially when you’re already dealing with the stress of property damage. Today, we’re going to guide you through what to expect after filing a home insurance claim and give you some tips to make the process go as smoothly as possible.
What Happens Immediately Following Your Homeowners Insurance Claim
The moment you’ve submitted a home insurance claim, a series of events is set into motion. First and foremost, your claim will be assigned to an adjuster. This is a professional who will evaluate your claim and estimate the cost of the loss or damage. The adjuster will likely contact you within a few days of filing your claim to discuss the details and possibly arrange a time to inspect your property. Remember, this person is there to help you, and being as cooperative as possible will go a long way in easing the process.
What Happens During The Visit
When the adjuster visits your home, they’ll inspect the damaged areas and review any related documentation you have, such as receipts or photographs. It’s critical at this stage to be thorough and accurate. Make sure you provide all the necessary information. This includes being clear about what happened, what was damaged, and how much you believe it is worth. If there’s any disagreement between you and your adjuster about the cost or the extent of the damage, don’t be shy to ask for clarification or challenge their findings. After all, this is about getting a fair outcome.
Prevent Further Damage
In the meantime, if you need to make temporary repairs to prevent further damage, be sure to document everything. Take pictures before and after the repairs, and keep all receipts. These will be important pieces of evidence when it comes to proving the extent of the damage and the cost of repairs.
As you move through the claim process, communication with your insurance company is key. Be proactive and keep them informed about any developments. Ask questions if you are unsure about anything and don’t hesitate to voice any concerns you may have.
Claim = Approved
Once the adjuster has completed their inspection and analysis, they’ll submit a report to the insurance company, who will then decide on your claim. If your claim is approved, you’ll receive a payout. The amount you receive can depend on many factors, such as your policy’s coverage limits, your deductible, and the depreciated value of damaged items.
The payment might come in two parts. First, an initial payment to kick-start the repair or replacement process, then a second payment to cover any remaining costs once the work is completed.
Claim = Denied
If your claim is denied, don’t panic. You have the right to dispute the decision. Start by contacting your insurer to understand why it was rejected. If you’re not satisfied with their explanation, you might consider hiring a public adjuster (that’s us!) or an attorney to advocate on your behalf.
Some Key Tips to Consider
Throughout this process, there are several things you can do to make the process smoother. Here are a few tips:
- Document Everything
From the damage to conversations with your insurance company, keep a thorough record. This will be useful if any disputes arise.
- Be Proactive
Don’t just wait for the insurance company to take action. Follow up on your claim regularly and provide any additional information promptly.
- Understand Your Policy
Know what your insurance policy covers and what it doesn’t. This can help manage your expectations and avoid any unpleasant surprises.
- Get Multiple Estimates
If major repairs are needed, get estimates from multiple contractors. This can provide a more accurate idea of repair costs and strengthen your case if you need to negotiate with your insurance company.
It might sound obvious, but working cooperatively with your adjuster and insurance company can make the process much smoother.
Harrell Adjusting Services: Advocating For You
While dealing with a home insurance claim may not be the most pleasant experience, understanding what to expect and taking steps to manage the process can make it a lot less daunting. Patience, proactivity, and good communication will go a long way in ensuring your claim is handled as smoothly and effectively as possible. If you decide you need more help and guidance, our team at Harrell Adjusting Services is just a call away. We’re happy to answer any questions you may have and advocate for you with the insurance company.