Write It Down: What to Keep Track of When Filing a Claim After a Hurricane

Posted by Richard Adams on November 6th, 2017

According to USA Today, much of the damage caused by flooding during Hurricane Harvey will not be covered by insurance. While homeowner’s and renter’s insurance usually cover wind damage, protection from groundwater flooding is only covered by flood insurance. Last spring, fewer than 20% of homes in Harris County, Texas, which is home to Houston, had flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance program.
For those filing claims, the best way to make sure you get the most out of your post-hurricane insurance claim is to contact your insurance company as soon as possible and then keep detailed records. Insurance adjusters typically visit the most damaged sites first, so while it can take up to six months for an insurance adjuster to contact you, it’s important to have as much information for the adjuster as possible. 
You should first assess damage to your home. Take plenty of photos and video from multiple angles. Keep a written log of personal items that have been damaged. Include date of purchase and price of the item, and take photos of any damaged items. If possible, hold onto any damaged items to show to the adjuster unless you need to throw certain items away per local regulations. If you need to make repairs to your home directly following a storm, keep all receipts. You should also keep receipts for hotel stays and meals purchased if you are unable to stay in your home due to storm damage.
According to the Consumer Federation of America, it is also advisable to keep a log of communications with your insurance company. Be sure to note the date, time, issues discussed, and the name and contact info of the employee every time you speak to the insurance company about the claim. You should have your claim number ready any time you speak to your insurance company. If you haven’t been visited by an adjuster, ask when you can expect to see one. 

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Richard Adams

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Richard Adams
Joined: November 6th, 2017
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