Has your home experienced water damage, fire destruction, or theft? You will need to file a home insurance claim. In the event of criminal activity, immediately call the police before taking any next steps. When you are ready to contact your insurance company, here is what you need to know about filing home insurance claims.
Before Submitting the Claim
Make a List of All Damaged Property
Depending on the incident, make a comprehensive list of all the damaged property in your home. Document both interior and exterior impairments.
Take Photos and Videos of the Damage
To keep extensive records, take photos and videos of the damage with time stamps. This will help to certify your claim and ensure a thorough investigation.
Contact the Insurance Company or Agent
Now that you have your own damage documentation, contact your insurance company. Your agent can give you more information regarding qualifying incidents and reimbursements. Discussing your claim is initially done over the phone, and they will later send out an adjuster.
Explain What Happened and the Extent of Damage
While explaining the event and harm to your home, be as detailed and informative as possible. This will help them understand the full extent of the incident and what they can do on their end. Provided this is an insurable occurrence, they will want to help you. You will have digital paperwork and personal data to submit to file and process your claim, so be prepared.
After Submitting the Claim
Claims Adjuster Will Visit
Now that you have contacted your insurance company and submitted a claim, an adjuster will visit your home and inspect the damage. It is important that claims adjusters receive Xactimate training since this will give them the most accurate estimate of damage costs. They may also ask for your documentation, photos, and videos.
Receive Settlement Check
After a claims adjuster visits your property, you will receive a check for the damage. Reimbursements can come in a variety of forms, depending on your situation:
- Immediately receive the full amount, minus the deductible
- Advance check on the full amount
- Delivered on a later date
- Lenders may receive the check for a mortgaged home
Typically, you will receive separate checks for each type of damage. If you use contractors to make repairs, they may want you to turn your claim over to them; however, you should use caution.
Once you have settled your claim with the insurance company, ensure your home is adequately protected going forward, as the company may classify your home as high risk. Regardless, properly insuring your home is essential for the well-being and comfort of you and your family. If you experience a qualifying event, everything you need to know about filing home insurance claims is here for reference!