If you’ve had a disaster in your home, you need to call your insurer promptly. Many insurers have stipulations that claims need to be filed within a certain time frame. Of course you’ll also want to call your insurer pretty quickly because you want to have a claim number issued for your case, get into the insurance company’s system and have your disaster on record. Be sure to keep detailed records of all of your phone calls and correspondence with your insurance company, your adjuster, and also with us, your fire, water, mold restoration company, like Spectrum Cleaning & Restoration of SWFL. One thing you want to do when talking to the adjuster and insurance company is be careful about what you say when describing the damage. Don’t give opinions about the scope of the damage or costs until we are able to give you an assessment of the damages. If you underestimate the damages verbally to your insurer, without actually knowing how much damage there is (and there is often unseen damage behind your walls you know nothing about when you’ve had a flood in particular), the insurance company can use that against you later to minimize your claim.
If you have not done it before, now is a good time to “deep dive” your insurance policy. Your first question should be whether or not your home or business is covered for the type of damage that has happened. For example, water damage typically is covered if the problem developed inside the home—such as from a burst pipe or efforts to extinguish a fire. However, many homeowner’s policies do not cover flood damage, mold, or damage resulting from a poorly maintained roof. A reputable insurance agent should be able to help you understand the limits and extent of your coverage. A public adjuster can also help you with this, and at Spectrum, we pride ourselves in being able to help our customers successfully deal with insurances claims.
Some info to look for in your policy:
- Did you know that your insurer could help cover costs if you are not able to return to your home? This could include the cost of alternative lodging or, if your kitchen is unusable, reimbursing you for food if you have to order out. If you are dealing with one of these situations, ask your insurer—and save your receipts.
- Look for how long the insurer claims they resolve issues like yours. Claims can take between two and six weeks to be resolved, and that’s if the process works smoothly and quickly for you. Other times, it can take far longer to fully process and resolve an insurance claim. It’s good to ask some questions to manage your expectations.
- Be sure you are making a claim on the right policy. For example, if a flying object breaks a window during a storm and water comes in through the break and ruins your rug, that may be a regular homeowners insurance claim. But if water enters your home due to water rising or seeping in from a flood, you will need to own to own some flood insurance to claim that.
If you are confused or need guidance in how to best handle your insurance claim, please give Spectrum Cleaning & Restoration of SWFL a call at 239-910-6381. Our experts can help you through the entire process and work with your insurer to help you get the best recovery possible.