Most of us hope that we will never have to file a claim for damage done to our home. But, if you incur a loss, here are a few things that you might want to do to avoid having problems later:
If you have damage that will result in an insurance claim, contact your insurer immediately.
They can be extremely helpful in explaining the claims process, recommending contractors, and providing helpful tips on the repair process.
Beware of contractors who show up unannounced, offering to do work quickly and at a price that seems too good to be true.
Be especially careful if they ask for homeowner’s insurance information or want you to sign a document for the insurer to pay them directly. It may be best to have the insurance company issue the check to you.
Before signing documents, contracts, or allowing work to begin, check out the reputation of the contractor. Ask for proof of liability and workmen’s comp insurance for their company and any sub-contractors, and verify this coverage.
Get a detailed, written contract and compare this with the adjuster’s report. If something seems unusual or you do not understand some of the details, ask questions. Your insurer can also help to review and clarify information.
Make sure that permits have been pulled and do not pay in full until the work is done to your complete satisfaction.
If you experience problems that you are unable to resolve with the contractor, contact your insurer, consumer resources, or seek legal advice.