Steps To Filing A Property Damage Claim

Daren Brown
By Daren Brown | March 25, 2019

claims-folderProperty damage can come from many sources. Hailstorms, wind storms, fire, or flood. What should you do if it happens to your home or business? It all begins with filing a property damage claim.

Making A Property Damage Claim

  1. Notify the insurance company as soon as possible. The faster you get the process started, the faster you will get things back to normal. Most insurance companies have a toll-free phone number for making claims any time, day or night. The representative on the other end of the line will help you start the claim process.

  2. Take pictures and/or videos of the damage. You need to capture what the damage was before anything else. The images will help show the damage done and the property lost.

  3. Secure the property to prevent additional loss. You are obligated by your insurance policy to prevent further damage from occurring where possible. For example, if your window is busted, you can secure it with plywood. Just remember to keep all the receipts and seek reimbursement from the insurance company.

  4. Find temporary accommodations, if needed. If your home is damaged and you cannot live there until repairs are made, you should find accommodations elsewhere. Businesses can relocate inventory and undamaged property to a secure location. Keep records of the expenses involved, since many policies cover "loss of use" and will reimburse these expenses.

  5. Don't begin repairs until the insurance company gives the go-ahead. It is very tempting to get the repair process started quickly, but that will work against you in making a property damage claim. The insurance company needs to see the full extent of the damage before any repairs are made.

  6. Don't throw anything away. When you are faced with a pile of debris, there's a strong temptation to put it all in a trash bag and take it to the dump. The insurance company needs to see the damage first hand. Wait until the insurance company approves before you start throwing things away.

  7. Make a detailed inventory of the losses. The insurance company will want to know what you lost. The inventory should be as detailed as possible so that you can get the maximum in compensation. If you have receipts or pictures, it will make your claim stronger.

  8. Cooperate with the insurance adjuster. In almost all property damage claims, the insurer will send out an adjuster to inspect the damage. The adjuster's report will be used by the insurance company to determine claim amounts.

It all begins with the insurance claim. If you're still waiting on a claim payout, or have a claim that has been denied by the insurance company, contact Stockard, Johnston, Brown & Netardus, P.C. in Amarillo. 

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Topics: First Party Insurance Claims