Getting your life back after your home has suffered water damage because of flooding is a complex and difficult process that involves more than cleanup and drying – if you have a property insurance that covers for flood damage, the recovery after the disaster should also involve actions to obtain compensation for the damage sustained by your property. Like most processes involved in the restoration, the process of putting together the claim file, of submitting it and of negotiating the compensation amount that your insurer is willing to pay is daunting, too, so here are some things that can help you understand the insurance claim procedure.
Practical Things to Do
The first thing to do after you notice the damage is to ensure the safety of the site by safely disconnecting any utilities that might cause hazards, such as the gas and the water supply and the electricity. If your home has been severely affected by the flood, no inspection and no mitigation action should commence before the safety of the premises is ensured.
The First Phone Calls
The first person to notify about the damage sustained by your property is your insurer – more precisely, your insurance agent. Call your agent and describe the damage – your insurance expert will help you with guidance regarding the next steps.
In most cases, insurance representatives advise their clients to turn to a damage restoration company for professional mitigation action. Insurance companies usually work with a network of preferred water damage Fort Collins restoration companies, so it is a good idea to ask your agent to recommend you specialized companies.
The next step is to establish contact with a damage restoration Fort Collins specialist. Many water damage Fort Collins companies provide emergency services, so you can expect your restoration team to arrive at your doorstep very soon.
The Process of Damage Assessment, Mitigation and Restoration
The first thing that your water damage Fort Collins technicians will do is to assess and document the damage. Your specialists will inspect every inch of the damaged area and they will record video footage and pictures of the damage. The recordings will be used for restoration purposes and they are important for the insurance claim file as well. The restoration company will also provide a cost estimate that you will also need to include into your claim file to substantiate your claim.
Your restoration company will then start the damage mitigation and restoration process – they will perform the cleanup and the drying and they will also make recommendations regarding the further steps of the restoration process.
Filing the Claim and Negotiations
When your claim file is complete, it is time to submit it. In most cases, the owner of the damaged property has about a year to submit the claim file, but the sooner you submit yours, the sooner you can receive the compensation. After you submit the document, your insurer will send their own expert called insurance adjuster to discuss the details of the damage and the steps taken to restore your home and to negotiate the final amount. If your claim is accepted and an agreement regarding the amount is reached, your insurer will the compensation soon.