When the unthinkable happens and devastating storms destroy your property, you would hope that your insurer would cover you. After all, that is one of the main reasons you pay for a homeowner’s insurance policy. Unfortunately, dealing with a claim after a hurricane or another serious storm is not always so simple.
Documenting the disaster
It is not uncommon for insurance companies to initially make low offers following a disaster. To ensure you have a good idea of the value of your claim, you will want to document the damage yourself. Take photos of all wind and water damage. Make notes of your observations. Consider also seeking the opinion of a contractor or construction specialist.
Keeping an eye on water damage
When we think of hurricanes, most of us think of high speed, damaging winds. While these can do their share of damage, water is actually known to do the worst of it. That said, there are some claims of water damage that an insurer may not cover.
For example, if they believe water damage has not come from a busted roof but instead is the result of flooding, they may not cover you. In your documentation, be sure you are taking several good quality photos of your roof, walls and the general structure of your home.
Other matters to consider
Some policies have details stating that damage from a hurricane may increase the policyholder’s deductible. Typically, this amount is 1% to 5% of the home’s value. If your home’s value is $250,000, you may have a deductible as high as $10,000.
Furthermore, if you are able to find a contractor to give you an opinion on the damages, try to obtain a quote for your home’s repairs. You may find that the needs of your home are far greater than the initial offer given by your insurance company.
Those who have had property damaged or destroyed by a hurricane should know their legal rights and remedies, and act quickly to preserve them. The experienced attorneys at Spagnoletti Law Firm can help you understand your rights. Please contact us online or call 713-659-0257 or 877-678-5864 to learn more about your legal rights.