When hurricane season rolls around, homeowners in affected areas know the importance of adequate insurance coverage. However, simply having insurance doesn’t guarantee a hassle-free claims process. At Stark Loss Consultants, we’ve seen countless insurance claims denied or underpaid due to avoidable mistakes made by policyholders.
Here are five key tips to ensure your hurricane insurance claim sails through smoothly.
Understand Your Policy Thoroughly: Before hurricane season even starts, review your insurance policy. Understand what is covered and what isn’t. Many standard policies might exclude flood damage, which is common after a hurricane. If you’re uncertain about any terms or coverages, reach out to your insurance provider or consult with a public insurance adjuster to clarify.
Document Everything: Before a hurricane hits, take photographs and videos of your property to provide a clear ‘before’ picture. This documentation will serve as a baseline to showcase the damage caused by the hurricane. After the storm, document all damages in the same way. Also, keep receipts for any immediate repairs or temporary living arrangements, as these might be reimbursable.
Mitigate Further Damage: After the hurricane, it’s your responsibility to prevent additional damage to your property. This might mean boarding up broken windows, placing tarps on damaged roofs, or moving possessions to a safer location. Failing to mitigate could give your insurance company a reason to reduce or deny your claim on the grounds of negligence.
File Your Claim Promptly: Insurers often work on a first-come-first-served basis after a disaster. Delaying your claim can not only push back the processing time but also raise red flags for the insurance company. Ensure you notify your insurer as soon as you can after the hurricane and follow their guidelines for submitting a claim.
Seek Expert Help if Needed: Dealing with insurance companies can sometimes be overwhelming. If you find the process daunting or feel that your claim isn’t being treated fairly, consider hiring a public insurance adjuster. Firms like Stark Loss Consultants specialize in representing policyholders, ensuring that claims are properly documented, filed, and negotiated to get the settlement you deserve.
In conclusion, being proactive and informed is your best defense against having a hurricane insurance claim denied. By understanding your policy, documenting damage, acting quickly, and seeking expert guidance, you can navigate the post-hurricane claims process with confidence and security. At Stark Loss Consultants, we’re always here to help you achieve a fair and favorable insurance settlement.
Have questions about your property insurance claim? Feel free to contact Stark Loss for more information about how a Public Adjuster can help.