Thursday, September 22, 2016

Do's and Don'ts For Filing a Homeowners Insurance Claim

One of the most important ways to protect your home investment is through homeowners insurance. Whether your home gets robbed or caught in a hail storm, you can file a homeowners insurance claim to help with the costs to fix damages or pay for stolen items. While insurance policies at the Lake of the Ozarks vary from person to person, there are a few basics about filing claims that everyone should know. In today's blog, your favorite Lake of the Ozarks insurance agent explains a few do's and don's for filing a homeowners insurance claim.

Do's For Filing a Claim 

1. DO read your homeowners insurance policy carefully. Before filing a claim, you want to make sure you fully understand what is covered and what is not. If you are unsure of your coverage, be sure to talk to a professional insurance agent at the Lake of the Ozarks.

2. DO know how to check for damage after severe weather and be sure to take pictures of any damage you find. Look for missing or cracked shingles, dents or punctures in your siding, gutters, roof and awning.

3. DO have an updated home inventory on hand to take a look at. If you've been a victim of robbery, its important that you know exactly what was taken or broken and the cost of what it will be to repair or replace those items.

4. DO consult a contractor before filing your claim. In the event of hail damage, have a roofing company come out and take a look. Most companies will do a free inspection and offer you a free quote on the cost of repairs or replacement. You'll want to present the estimate to the insurance company with your claim.

Don'ts For Filing a Claim 

1. DON'T wait to file your claim. If you discover damage, experience a break-in, etc, it's important that you file a claim right away. If you wait too long, you risk being denied coverage, and having to pay repair or replacement costs out of pocket.

2. DON'T file a claim if the costs to fix the damages is less than what your deductible is. Every time  you file a claim, its recorded in a database, whether its approved or not. The number of claims you have can affect your insurance coverage and premium rates in the future.

3. DON'T throw out any receipts. Be sure to keep track of all expenses related to this homeowners insurance claim. Do you have to stay in a hotel until your home is repaired? Do you need to buy some home improvement items to temporarily fix some damages until the contractors can come? Your policy may offer coverage for some of these types of items.

4. DON'T assign your benefits to a contractor. Disreputable contractors are known for taking your insurance benefits without finishing the job. Instead have the insurance benefits come to you and then you can distribute the payment to the contractor.

Let Insure the Lake review your homeowners insurance policy to make sure it meets your needs. Our goal is to work with our companies to find the most comprehensive coverage for the best price. We have contracts with over 50 insurance carriers and have access to most carriers on the open market. Give us a call at 573-348-2794 to learn more about your coverage options.

Request a Free Quote Online! Contact Insure the Lake today for all your Lake of the Ozarks insurance needs! 

About the Author: Steve is a double back-flip insurance ninja. He was named Young Insurance Agent of the Year by the Missouri Association of Insurance Agents in 2010 and is a Certified Insurance Counselor. When he is not helping customers, he enjoys community service, Latin dancing with his beautiful wife and going on adventures with his two awesome sons.

Steve Naught, CIC
3736 Osage Beach Parkway
Osage Beach, MO 65065
Next to Golden Coral