Fire Insurance Claim Tips To Bear In Mind
Having your house razed by fire and losing all your belongings is bad enough, it makes it the more depressing if fire insurance companies start giving you a hard time too. Fire restoration costs, as well as fire damage deodorization expenses, can quickly pile up so you need to file a claim immediately. However, even if you have religiously paid all your insurance dues, it is no assurance that you would be treated the way that you deserve to be. Fire insurance claims can be a convoluted and tricky process and thus would need a few guiding hands from top advisers. This article hopes to impart some of that knowledge, should the unthinkable happen to your home.
Get an early payout
After the incident, as victims of the tragedy, you will find it difficult to fend for yourself for a little while. You might even start to think about how you could have prevented the incident, and how you will ensure it will not happen again. Getting a fire sprinkler installation for your next home will definitely keep your family, your belongings, and yourself much safer from fire. At this time, there are more immediate matters to attend to of course. It should go without saying, it is not safe to try to recover belongings, and it is especially not smart to recover them if they are of little value. Unfortunately, these things also include day to day essentials like toiletries. In other words, you would be crazy to run into a house for just a few towel rolls so you could survive for sometime before the insurance money comes in. Luckily for you, there is actually a way to secure yourself a small amount of cash to go around while your house is getting rebuilt, repaired or replaced. This is officially considered an advance and there are a few things that you should know about it first:
- First of all you have to spend only on the essentials like an apartment to live in, some clothes, food, and other personal items. The insurance company might not look to kindly at you for spending too much before the final computation of you fire insurance claim, los angeles.
- As been already mentioned, this is an advance so this will be taken out off your final payout. Basically, you have to slow your roll in spending this advance because it will be taken off from the money you need to rebuild your house.
- Keep your receipts for liquidation as the insurance company might opt to review all your spendings should they deem them to be excessive. Nothing smells more like insurance fraud than going on a cruise for the first bit of money that you received.
The agents often check up on you to ask you if you need anything and these are advances are one of the most basic offers they could give you. Just be sure to know exactly the terms of the agreement to ensure that your final payout will not be affected in any way other than the deductions.
Make a list, check it twice
You have probably heard about this a countless number of times before from your insurance agents. And that is to keep a record of all your assets and their prices. It is tedious, we know, but this is the only way to ensure that you get maximum value for every asset that you have insured. Should any incident occur, you will have to take out this list and try to sum up all the damages complete with documentations. Here are some smart tips on how to get this done:
- Be quick about it as memory fades faster than fire during amidst all the trauma. Gather your members of your household, and once they have all settled down, ask them each of the items they know for sure have been lost in the fire. This way you can cross off the items in the list and you can start checking on other items.
- Keep the charred remains of the burnt assets. The best way to convince the insurance company that you have had your item destroyed in the fire is to hold the thing that was burnt to a crisp right in front of their eyes. While, hopefully, they won’t doubt you enough for that to be necessary, they have to at least see that you made an effort to keep the evidences as pristine as possible which brings us to the next point.
- Protect the site of the fire by building a fence around it if necessary. Or, if the house is still standing, you should bar all the entrance ways. This way, you can lock out looters, animals, and anything else that may alter the site.
- Never throw anything away even if it looks barely recognizable. The insurance company might frame this to their advantage so better be careful.
One has to ask when is the best time to call the insurance company when your house is burning. Some might answer “right after the embers settle”, and that is quite wrong. You should call the fire insurance company as soon as possible. The main reason for this is to being the fire insurance claim process immediately. While there are many regulations that try to push insurance companies to process your claims in a timely manner, you can never really know for sure because there are many factors that may be put into play. And, if the fire razed several houses, the insurance claims might already have started to other victims thus putting your papers at the bottom of the pile.
An important document that you should immediately secure is the “proof of loss”. Fire insurance companies will refuse to honor any loss if it is not accompanied by this document. And speaking of documents there may be quite a few that you have to keep track off when filing for a fire insurance claim, los angeles. When conversing with the fire insurance company, many dialogs will take place and in multiple channels. Be it email, text, chat, or phone calls, you have to keep copies of these conversations as there may be a lot of information here that might be needed in the future especially if there are disagreements with the final pay out.
Keep original documents as they hold reliability when being examined. It is not a bad idea though to keep duplicates or better yet secure soft copies and upload them to the cloud for easy access anywhere.