The Atlantic Hurricane season is just a few months away and for most Florida homeowners that means preparing themselves for the worst. Some of these homeowners will get everything on the hurricane preparedness checklist and a few of them will scour the internet for even more ways to stand their ground in the face of a natural disaster. The fact is that all of those homeowners can benefit from understanding what to do if they need to file a claim with their homeowner’s insurance. That’s why Murray Insurance Services has put together a list of tips that will help homeowners across the state of Florida understand the claim process in the event that a major hurricane makes landfall this year.
Keep Excellent Records
If one thing is for certain, it’s that homeowners are sure to accumulate receipts, invoices, cancelled checks, and all kinds of financial documents. All of these items need to go into a folder as soon as possible, because they’re an important part of the claim process. It would be an even better idea to photocopy these documents so the homeowner can have a record of them as well. Folders are readily available and can be picked up when the homeowner is shopping for batteries and canned food. Plastic accordion folders are preferred, because they offer more protection from water and papers can’t fall out of them.
Snap a Photo
Homeowners need to take photos of the damage to their home as soon as it safe to do so. This will help the insurance adjustor with the claim process, so it makes sense to be as thorough as possible. It’s best to keep these photos safe and to keep a copy of the originals. This can be done by saving a digital copy on the computer or keeping a physical set in a folder. People who are very cautious can do both.
Get It In Writing
General contractors and repairmen of all sorts are sure to be busy after a hurricane strikes. A homeowner might talk to several different plumbers or roof repairman in one day. With so many people assessing the damage to their home it can be easy to forget to ask for a physical copy of an estimate or an invoice. However, it’s in the best interest of the homeowner to do whatever it takes to remember to get everything in writing and make a photocopy for their own records. This is because a verbal agreement won’t help the claim process one bit. Once the documents are procured, they should go into a folder for safe keeping.
Know Your Coverage
Not every homeowner’s insurance policy is alike and that’s why it’s important for homeowners to know what their policy covers. “Some homeowners may not have read their homeowner’s insurance policy since the day they signed it and for some people that could have been years ago. If they’re feeling unsure about their policy they can always go over it with their insurance agent. They’ll be more than happy to answer any questions the homeowner may have. ”, said Shannon Murray of Murray Insurance Services.