Water Damage Insurance Claim Process
If you have homeowner’s insurance or renter’s insurance, then it may or may not cover water damage to your home. It is common for traditional insurance policies to not cover water damage. This usually ends up being coverage that you need to purchase separately under a different policy. The location of where you live will likely influence your decision to purchase this insurance.
Even if you have water damage coverage, it may not cover all kinds of water damage. For example, there are some policies that cover rain flooding and sewer backup, but they don’t cover accidental water damage or burst pipes. You also need to understand what your insurance company is going to replace in the event that your possessions become damaged. Some policies will restore electronics and furnishings while others will only compensate you for damage done to your home’s structure.
What you will want to do first is file a claim with your insurance company. Then you should wait for their claims adjuster to visit your property and assess the damage. Before they arrive, your insurance company may tell you to put boards on your windows or doors in order to prevent any further damage. If you have any possessions which are still in good condition, you will be told to store them someplace safe.
As for everything else that is damaged, you will be told to leave it alone and not touch any of it. The adjuster will need to see exactly what was damaged so that they can accurately process your claim. But before the adjuster even arrives, you should take it upon yourself to snap photos of the damaged areas. You will want to have as much evidence of the water damage as you can to back up your claim. Do not clean up or throw anything away or make repairs until after the adjuster has completed their inspection.
Once the adjuster has finished assessing the water damage, you will find out within 2 weeks whether or not your claim has been approved. You usually have to wait for the insurance claim to be approved before you are allowed to start throwing items away and make repairs to your home. After all, that is what the insurance money is supposed to be paying for. On the other hand, if your claim has been denied because the adjuster believed the damage was caused by an ongoing leak that was left unrepaired, then you should request a second opinion from a public adjuster. If they find your claim to be legitimate, they will forward their findings to your insurance company and it could possibly cause the company’s denial to be reversed.