How to Negotiate With Your Insurer After a Fire

Contacting your insurance company is the first major step in fire restoration.

Learning how to negotiate with your insurance company can help you make the fire restoration process a little less stressful.

It may be the last thing you want to do after going through a traumatic house fire, but the sooner you open the lines of communication with your insurer, the faster you’ll get the home you love back in shape. Despite their reputation of being tough and unemotional, most insurance agents are more than happy to help their clients collect the benefits they deserve. They just need your help to do their job quickly and correctly. Here’s how to get the ball rolling in the right direction:

Take a Closer Look at Your Contract

If you’re like most homeowners who suddenly find themselves dealing with unexpected fire damage, chances are that you haven’t reviewed your insurance policy since the day you bought it. Going through it in detail before you call is the best way to up your confidence and put yourself in control of the negotiation process.

Remember to keep a copy in front of you whenever you speak with insurance agents to make sure they’re holding up their end of the deal and that you’re asking for compensation that fits within your contract’s conditions. When emotions are running high, it’s easy to forget that what your insurance agent can do is limited by the terms of your agreement.

Hang on to Damaged Items

In addition to structural fire restoration, insurance policies usually cover the majority of the items that were lost in the flames. Even if they’re beyond repair, holding on to damaged possessions can instantly give you the upper hand throughout the negotiation process.

In general, have a master list of all perished goods ready before the adjuster pulls into your driveway to make sure you don’t leave anything out later on.

Ask for Living Expenses

Depending on your policy, you may be able to get coverage for temporary housing while your home is being repaired. Since reimbursement is usually provided after you make upfront payments, get proof of coverage in advance if your insurance carrier agrees to foot the final bill.

Don’t Give Them a Reason to Say No

Remember that insurance companies have to be selective about which claims they approve to stay in business. Incomplete claims, lack of proof, and coverage limits are a few common reasons why claims get denied. To streamline the process, create a complete file that covers everything related to your claim, including receipts, pictures, records, and damage estimates. For more tips on filling out fire claims, read this report from ABC News.

Need more information about fire restoration in Northeast Indiana? Contact Paul Davis Restoration & Remodeling or head to our homepage for expert advice and local recovery services.