If you have Hurricane Michael damage in your home, there are several things you need to know. Here are nine tips to get you started.
Notify Your Insurance Provider
You need to notify your insurance provider within 60 days of the flood damage if you have flood insurance. There is a step-by-step guide on how to file your flood claim, put out by the National Flood Insurance Program.
Take Steps to Minimize Further Damage
Do not make any permanent repairs until told to by your insurance company. Only make repairs needed to protect your home and property from further damage. Cover broken windows and holes to keep rain out and prevent theft. Make sure to save all repair receipts.
You May Have Some Coverage
You may have some coverage from your homeowners’ policy even if you don’t have flood insurance. It is in your best interest to contact your agent or company as soon as you are aware of the damage since deadlines vary by insurance company. Your homeowners’ policy may cover things like:
- Roof damage from a tree hitting your home
- Water damage from rain if your roof or windows were damaged in the storm.
- Living expenses to cover hotels, food, or other expenses if you were ordered to evacuate
- Spoilage of food due to power outages.
The Government May Help With Hurricane Michael Damage
Help from the Federal Government is available if you have uninsured losses (like floods without flood insurance). Go to DisasterAssistance.gov to find out if you can get help from FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency)
You May Be Eligible for a Disaster Loan
These loan programs are available through the U.S. Small Business Administration. Homeowners, renters, and small businesses can be eligible.
Walk Around With The Insurance Company
When the adjuster inspects the damage, make sure they don’t miss anything. You can have your contractor or builder or public adjuster with you to discuss estimates or technical specifications.
File a Complaint
If you think your insurance company has treated you unfairly, file a complaint with the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation. You can do this by using their online form or calling their Help Line at 850-413-3140.
You Will Deal With Adjusters The Most During Your Claim.
There are several types of insurance adjusters. Know who you are dealing with and what your rights are.
- Company adjusters are employees of the insurance company.
- Independent adjusters are independent contractors who work for insurance companies. They usually charge the company a fee for every claim they handle.
- Public insurance adjusters are independent adjusters that help people negotiate claims with their insurance companies. Public adjusters do not work not the insurance company. They work for you. Public insurance adjusters charge fees for their services. Make sure you understand what you’ll have to pay before hiring a public insurance adjuster.
What Should I Expect From My Insurance Company?
- Your company must let you know they got your claim within 14 days of getting it. They might ask you for more information to investigate your claim. This could include asking you to fill out a proof-of-loss form.
- The company must accept or reject your claim within 30 business days of getting all the information it needs from you. They have to tell you they reject your claim in writing.
- The company must send your check within 90 business days after it agrees to pay your claim.
- These deadlines may be extended after disasters.
Filing a Hurricane Michael damage claim can be difficult, especially if you have major damage. Aftermath Adjusters and Consulting is here to help. Give us a call today, and let us help you get the claim settlement you deserve.