With the 2019 hurricane season officially starting on June 1st, many homeowners are looking into purchasing insurance to cover any damages that could potentially occur in the wake of a tropical storm. While such an event can be devastating and leave behind hundreds of thousands of dollars in property damage, you should be careful to avoid the following common mistakes when filing an insurance claim.
Don’t delay contacting your insurer – the sooner you contact them, the sooner you can get the ball rolling. The longer you wait, the longer it will take a representative to get to your home and start assessing the damage.
Don’t feel as though you have to accept the initial damage estimate – remember, the goal of every insurance company is to close damage loss claims as quickly as they can. Consequently, the true cost of damage repairs could be undervalued.
Don’t give the insurance adjuster your “diagnosis” – telling the insurance adjuster what you feel was the cause of the damage could result in it not being covered. Just answer any question that they have and give the rest of the information to your lawyers.
Don’t throw away any items just because you think they’re damaged – salvage any items and property that you can. Be sure you take photos of any items that cannot be repaired or salvaged. Keep this as evidence of the damages that occurred.
Ignore advertisements prompting you to contact a property loss attorney – just because a legal firm spends a ton of money advertising their services doesn’t mean that they have the experience and expertise to handle your claim.
Make sure the insurance rep examines the full extent of your claim – some reps won’t investigate the total extent of the damage or will deliberately overlook portions of your home that have sustained damage.
Never remain in your home if it’s been rendered uninhabitable – your insurance policy should have an “Alternative Living Expense” clause which will reimburse you for any expenses you incur if you’re displaced after the storm.
Never return to your home until you’ve been told it’s safe to do so – you’ll only make it more difficult for emergency personnel and first responders who are helping people in need and looking for survivors.
Never try to handle your damage claim without professional help – catastrophic damage to your home after a hurricane is not something that an untrained individual should try to tackle. No matter what, let the professionals handle the task. They know what they are doing and will be able to handle it properly.
If you have questions regarding your hurricane insurance coverage or are having a problem with resolving a damage claim, call the Korin Law, P.A. today.