Numerous incidents can happen, which could result in learning how to make a home insurance claim. These incidents could include broken windows or glasses, constant drops of water from the ceiling, and many more.
However, whichever it may be, it is important to report such problems promptly and keep records of all related expenses.
Also, maintain clear communication with your insurer to ensure full compensation for your homeowner’s insurance claim.
How To Make A Home Insurance Claim
In this section, we have highlighted some various steps on how to make a home insurance claim. Using these steps will help you enhance your payment offer and expedite the compensation procedures.
Review The Damage
Start first by reviewing the damage to your house or properties. If your house has sustained huge damage, avoid re-entering until you are allowed by emergency personnel or local authorities to ensure it is safe. However, obtaining clearance to go home is very essential after crime incidents or natural disasters.
File Your Claims Immediately
Your insurance provider may offer various channels for submitting home insurance claims online, including apps, agents, or direct calls to the company. Regardless of the chosen method, reporting the claim immediately can compensate you quickly.
After collecting your claim from your insurer, it will send a claim number and an adjuster to review the damage. Subsequently, the insurance company will provide a first payment, deducting your deductible, to cover the estimated repair expenses.
In cases of storm damage, it’s possible that neighboring homes were also affected, resulting in an increased claim and high demand on your insurer. However, early submission of your claim can enhance your position in the queue for processing.
Document The Damage
Take pictures or videos of the property affected by the damage. Also, it’s important to document both the damage and the cause of the incident.
If you possess a home inventory enlisting your belongings and their values, utilize it to facilitate the compilation of your list of affected properties.
Do Necessary Repairs
After documenting the incident, consider your safety and take the necessary measures to prevent further damage. Moreover, prevents making permanent repairs or discarding damaged items.
However, it’s important to concentrate on temporary repairs, such as boarding up broken windows. If you cover expenses for emergency repairs, replacement items, or temporary housing, keep all receipts. These receipts will be essential later when seeking reimbursement from your insurance company.
Contact Your Insurer
Next, contact your insurance company immediately. If you are not sure about how to reach your agent, review your policy documents or the insurer’s website.
Additionally, most home insurers offer a 24/7 claims phone number, while others may direct you to begin the process through their app. Before filing your claim, consider asking certain questions, especially if you lost your policy documents.
For example, you should confirm details such as your deductible, coverage for the claim, the time frame for filing, and the end result of the process. Lastly, be ready to give your policy number and observe notes during the conversation.
Record the name, title, and contact information of the individual assisting you, along with the date and time.
Fill Out The Form Provided By Agent
Nowadays, some companies make it simple to file claims by offering online or app-based filing options.
So, your home insurance provider might guide you to your local agent to complete a paper form. Regardless, get a fast and thorough completion of the required claims form.
Converse With Adjuster
Once you have submitted the claim form, the insurer will appoint an adjuster for your claim. Typically, the adjuster will request an interview and evaluate the damage.
If necessary, a scheduled inspection will be required. Before the inspection, ensure all your documentation is prepared, including proof of ownership for any affected personal belongings.
Get An Estimate for Overall Repairs
If your home has been destroyed, you must secure repair estimates. It’s also beneficial to have a contractor during inspections. However, it’s advisable to wait on scheduling repairs until you obtain approval from the insurer.
Collect Your Check And Make The Final Repairs
After approval of your claim and finalization of the amount, you will receive your payment. This payment can be utilized to replace damaged belongings and cover repair costs.
The initial payment is usually based on estimates from the claims adjuster. A second check may follow upon submission of receipts for actual expenses and receipt of the final bill from the contractor.
Additionally, the possibility of claim denial exists if you fail to meet the filing deadline, miss a premium payment, or play a role in the loss through negligence.
Common Home Insurance Claims
The coverage provided by homeowners insurance can vary, with differences in what it does and does not cover.
For instance, depending on your location and the specific policy you purchase, the policy may not fully cover all damage from a hurricane.
However, certain claims are more common and tend to be consistently covered across different plans and locations.
Wind And Hail
Closely 3% of insured homes face wind and hail causing damage during specific periods. Incidents such as hurricanes and tornadoes also cause wind damage.
Fire And Lightning
Home insurance covers damages whether a fire starts inside or outside the home. Examples of covered incidents include kitchen fires, electrical fires, and wildfires.
Interestingly, only 0.26% of homes filed claims due to fire or lightning in 2020, yet these claims constituted nearly 24% of the total payouts.
Water Damage And Freezing Incidents
This type of coverage covers any type of water damage that could happen inside the home, like burst pipes. This damage affected approximately 1.6% of insured homes.
However, it is crucial to note that most policies exclude coverage for flooding unless you purchase separate flood insurance for residents in hurricane-prone or heavy rainfall areas.
Closely 0.2% of homes have faced theft or stolen property. This coverage is responsible for less than 1% of the payment.
Other Forms Of Property Damage
These factors include vandalism and malicious mischief, which affect slightly more than 0.75% of homes, falling outside the aforementioned categories.
Bodily Injury And Property Damage
Homeowners insurance also includes liability protection for bodily injury and property damage claims. This particular coverage begins when you take responsibility for the incident caused by someone else. In addition, with bodily injury and property damage claims, only 0.07% of homes are filed.
Medical Payments Or Other
Claims involving medical payments or other losses covered by liability protection were rare, with only 0.03% of homes filing such claims.
Credit Card And Other
Homes filing claims related to credit cards and other unauthorized use, counterfeit money, forgery, and unclassified incidents have a minimal fraction, less than 0.01%.
Consider the nature of your claim, taking into account the efficiency of documenting the loss and establishing that it resulted from a covered event.
However, keep in mind that homeowners insurance doesn’t extend coverage to problems arising from normal wear and tear.
If you have experienced damage to your home or property due to an incident settled by your insurer, knowing how to make a claim is essential. When initiating a home insurance claim, documentation and responsiveness are vital.
Keep copies of receipts, records, or any communication pertinent to your claim, and cover any requests to facilitate a smoother process.