Fire brings devastating damages to a property. Many times, a house affected by fire is completely destroyed. Dealing with your insurance company and filing out the claim form properly to assure the best settlement is not an easy feat. The goal for insurance companies is to send you the smallest settlement amount possible. Here are a few tips to help you recuperate your losses:

1. Don’t rely on the claim adjuster the insurance company sends you. The solution is to hire your own public adjuster. Fire damages are difficult to assess. There could be structural damages that are hidden at first look, and the claim adjuster sent by the insurance company doesn’t have any interest in bringing those damages up. You need an independent professional to evaluate all damages.

2. Create your own damage assessment. No one knows better the value of your property and all the items inside, like furniture, appliances, art objects, clothes and others, than you do. So, try to estimate how much money you lost in the fire. This way, the public adjuster you hired and the claim adjuster sent by the insurance company will have a reference point for your fire claim.

If the fire claim settlement the insurance company proposes is much smaller than your estimate, you don’t have to agree to that. Ask your public adjuster to go ahead with the paper work and to contest the insurance company’s damage assessment.

I will give several more tips in my follow up post next week…