House Fire Loss-
This is the most devastating event in anyone's lives. A fire loss can be fatal and for the ones that survive their lives are completely upended. If this has happened to you we offer our most sincere condolences. I wanted to write this post to help those in this exact situation. What do you need to do after a fire loss?
The first thing is the basics- Take care of yourself & your family. You will need to find temporary housing. This might be a friend’s house or a hotel for the first few nights. You will need to work out a more semi-permanent situation though. We recommend a pre-furnished executive suite or an Airbnb. This will allow you to have some type of normalcy in your life. Your insurance owes to maintain your standard of living while you out of your house.
Document- After your house is safe to return to. You will need to document your loss. I recommend you take a video for this. You will want to take a video of the exterior interior and contents. This will help make a record of your loss. If you do not document your loss it never happened.
This can be very time consuming, but it is important. You will need to document all the walls floor, ceiling, and closets in every room of your house. This is for your protection as your insurance company will not be this through. Do not throw anything away without documentation. What it is, how old it is, and how much does it cost to replace.
Next, you are going to need to get your claim filed and get a copy of your policy. This is crucial. The policy will tell you what is going to be covered and what is not. It will tell you how much coverage you have, and it will tell your after-loss duties. These duties must be completed by you in order to ensure you covered by the policy. The carrier will not tell you what you have to do. If you don't comply with these provisions, they may not cover your loss.
If you do not feel comfortable interpreting your policy. We offer a free consultation and would be happy to assist you.
Your insurance company will send out their hired adjuster to inspect the loss. They usually spend an hour or two on the loss and put together their estimate of your repairs. It is important to know that this is not a solid number and you will need to get other opinions on the amount of loss. The adjuster by the insurance company has hundreds of claims that they are working on at any given time and they often rush through their estimate or overlook damages. You are owed to be put in a pre-loss financial condition. This is the most expensive purchase in your life. You need to take it seriously.
Once you have an agreed-upon amount of your loss with the carrier you can hire a contractor to get the work completed.
Fire damage is extensive and there are many areas that you do not consider at first. Things like insulation in the walls, smoke damage in electronics and appliances, the temperature can also damage items even if they did not burn.
I wish you the best of luck in your recovery from your fire loss. If you feel it is more than you can take on yourself or if you feel you are getting underpaid by your insurance company. Give us a call let us fight for you!