No one wants to have to file a home insurance claim, but unfortunately, natural disasters and other incidents can happen. When they do, it’s important to know what not to do in order to avoid common mistakes that can slow down the process or even lead to your claim being denied. In this blog post, we’ll discuss five of the most common mistakes people make when filing a home insurance claim and how you can avoid them.
Before we jump into our list, let’s cover some facts about home insurance claims. According to the Insurance Information Institute, in 2017, there were over two million homeowners insurance claims filed in the United States alone. Of those, about one-third were for wind and hail damage, with water damage and freezing coming in second and third respectively. The average claim payout was just over $11,000.
In the state of Florida, the majority of claims are due to wind and hail accounting for 45.5% of claims filled in 2020. The average home claim payout was $13,955. When it comes to natural disasters payout numbers go up, but the process becomes more complicated.
With that in mind, here are 5 mistakes to avoid when filing a home insurance claim:
Filing Too Soon:
It’s important to give your insurance company time to assess the damage and determine what caused it before you file a claim. This is especially true if severe weather is involved, as they will need to send an adjuster out to inspect the property. Filing too soon could result in your claim being denied.
Not Getting Multiple Estimates:
Be sure to get multiple estimates for repairs before you submit them to your insurance company. This will ensure that you are getting a fair price for the work and that the repairs are actually necessary.
Failing to Document the Damage:
Be sure to take pictures or videos of the damage as soon as possible so that you have a record of it. This will be helpful when filing your claim and providing evidence to the insurance company.
Not Reading Your Policy:
It’s important that you understand what is and is not covered in your policy before you file a claim. Otherwise, you could be in for a rude awakening when your claim is denied.
Not Keeping Track of Expenses:
Be sure to keep all receipts and documentation of any expenses related to the damage so that you can be reimbursed by the insurance company. This includes things like temporary housing, food, and other necessary expenses.