How do I get the Most Out of My Water Damaged Claim?
1. Contact a Water Mitigation Company
The first thing you should do is contact a water mitigation company in order to mitigate your damages and “dry” out the water damage to try to preserve some of the damaged parts of your home. But you need to be careful with their contracts and never pay your deductible to them.
2. Contact a Plumber
This is very important in order to document the how everything happened and what was fixed. It’s important that the plumber put on the invoice that a pipe cracked it needed to be replaced or pipe was leaking needed to be replaced. However, the plumber shouldn’t try to get cute and fancy but stating anything about wear & tear, corrosion, or write a novel about what he found. Also, if the plumber can take a photo of the damaged pipe, appliance, or water line that was replaced that would be very helpful.
3. Contact Insurance Company
Now, after you did the above two things you can contact the insurance company to file your claim. The insurance company shouldn’t be the first person you call as you can see.
4. Never Use a Contractor or Water Mitigation Company the Insurance Company Recommends
These contractors that work for the insurance company have contracts to protect the insurance company. They will not do proper work rather their sole goal is to protect the insurance company for paying too much money on a claim. They fail to do their job properly, rather, they tend to cut corners not doing everything they should. My recommendation is to call your own contractor whether that would be for water mitigation, mold remediation, or a contractor to do the repairs.
5. Get Estimate of Damages
If you get an estimate from a contractor make sure the contractor puts in the following:
*20% for Overhead & Profit
*10% Gas Surcharge or Inflation Surcharge
Do not send the insurance company a contractor’s estimate without these additional costs because adding these factors in will give you the ability to negotiate your water damage insurance claim to get the results you want.
6. Keep Track of All Additional Expenses
You should keep track of plumbing costs, additional food costs, living expenses which includes having to live somewhere else while your home is inhabitable. Sometimes, your electrical bill will cost more in the month you had all the water mitigation dryers in your home. You can claim these additional electrical costs.
7. Tips on Negotiating with Insurance Company
A. Keep all communication by email only if you can
B. Copy the manager/supervisor on every email
C. Request a copy of their estimate before you provide your contractor’s estimate
D. Use the plumber and water mitigation company to be your expert to validate your claim and damages
My name is Mike Keeler. I am a Licensed Public Adjuster in the State of Florida.
If you need help with a claim, have a question on a claim, or would like me to represent you if you live in Florida please feel free to contact me:
Phone (754) 252-5438