Be Prepared for Disaster and Damage

Be Prepared for Disaster and Damage

Be prepared to deal with damage: hurricane, tornado, fire, flood, earthquake, mold, and more.

Food, emergency shelter and evacuation plans are still standard and not outdated. However, having a plan for how to deal with damage after the storm is what the vast majority of people lack.

Homeowners and businesses are a step ahead when they have taken the time to take time to fully understand their insurance policies. Insurance policies are fundamentally complicated documents. They place many obligations on the policyholder when filing a damage claim. These obligations include providing detailed appraisals and/or photo documentation of the damage as well as photos and inventories of personal items.

What Can a Public Adjuster Do?

A public adjuster can ease the burden for policyholders faced with various types of storm related or other damage. Public adjusters are trained advocates who are an exclusive group who are also licensed and bonded to work exclusively for insured policyholders. Public adjusters prepare, present and adjust claims on the behalf of insured policyholders.

Why is it Crucial to Understand Insurance Policies Right Now?

As established and experienced public insurance adjusters, 1800Adjusters has found that policyholders often do not understand their policy limitations or requirements. Policyholders who accept settlement offers in haste and out of desperation generally end up with the responsibility and burden of making unnecessary fixes that insurance policies don’t cover. This is largely due to not being prepared and therefore being unable to produce the proper documentation necessary to get their claim paid at a maximum level.

Without proper understanding of your insurance policy and proper counsel, you run the risk of settling too low through desperation, intimidation, and/or lack of knowledge. Knowledge you need regarding your policy and of the role, reputation, and trustworthiness of public adjusters.

What Steps of Preparation Can be Taken right Now?

The staff at 1800Adjusters, founded with consumer advocacy as part of our mission, urges policyholders to prepare now for the worst by taking these simple but important steps (now, prior to any possible damage from any possible cause) to help document and secure your claim after a loss:

  1. Visually record your home and possessions (digital camera, traditional camera, smart phone or video recorder )
  2. List of all your personal and business property/belongings
  3. Organize receipts for large items such (i.e. appliances, furniture and electronics; and, make copies to include with your property inventory
  4. Remove valuables (such as the originals of family photos that cannot be replaced) and store them in a well-sealed safe or safe deposit box; in the case of photos, create digital copies of these irreplaceable items
  5. In your disaster supply kit, be sure to include copies of your insurance policies (as well as family medical information, deeds, wills, etc.); place the originals in a well-sealed safe or safe deposit box
  6. Research community emergency plans such as hurricane evacuation routes now to determine where you will go and how you will get there if you ever need to evacuate
  7. Carefully review your insurance coverage in advance of possible unexpected disaster to determine your deductible on a loss
  8. Thoroughly review the “Duties After Loss” section of your policy since failure to follow the provisions listed in this section could result in non-payment on your legitimate claim
  9. Be sure to check the “Exclusions” portion of your windstorm policy since many insurance companies have added new exclusions to coverage, which could affect your protection
  10. Know your home’s vulnerability to storm surge, flooding, and wind; correct what vulnerabilities you can for your own protection and confirm whether your policy covers such damage
  11. If you plan to use the help of a public adjuster or if you need to ask questions to determine if you do want to use one if the unfortunate situation were to arise, research now to find a licensed and reputable member you can trust
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