From high winds to heavy rains, extreme weather can swoop down anytime and cause devastating damage. Should your property suffer storm damage, would you know what to do – and what not to do – when dealing with your insurance company in the aftermath? Here are some tips.
Do secure your property against further damage, if you can safely do so. For example, cover up broken windows in order to prevent rain from entering your house and causing water damage. If you neglect to secure your property, your insurance company may not cover damages sustained after the initial event.
Don’t make extensive, permanent repairs to your property until after the insurance claims adjuster has inspected your property to assess the damage, and has approved a repair cost.
Do get detailed estimates for such repairs so you can submit them to your adjuster.
Do make a detailed inventory of the damage. Describe damaged items and list their approximate purchase dates, their cost at the time of purchase, and their estimated repair or replacement cost. Take photos/videos of the damage; try to capture brand names, model numbers, etc. in the images.
Don’t get rid of damaged items until after the insurance claims adjuster has visited. Like your photos/videos, damaged
goods provide important evidence as to the losses incurred.
Do keep all your receipts, such as those for materials and labor needed for temporary repairs, living expenses incurred should you require temporary accommodations, and interim storage needed for your belongings. You’ll want to keep track of every dime you spend so your insurance company can reimburse you for all your expenses.