What If My Home Is Damaged During a Storm?

What If My Home Is Damaged During a Storm?


What do you do if your home is damaged during a storm? Don’t despair—help is available. But act quickly, as many insurance companies have a time limit on filing a claim—and some require you to do it almost immediately after a storm occurs.

Step #1—Check for damage.

Look for cracked, dented, chipped, broken, or missing roof tiles, siding, or windows—as well as damage inside the home (such as in the basement). These are typical area of damage after a hail, wind, or ice storm.

Step #2—Document the damage.

If you find damage, take pictures to document it. Write down the time/date of the storm.

Step #3—Report damage to your insurance agent.

Call your insurance agent to report any damage. Ask to have an insurance adjuster come to the house to assess the damage.

Step #4—File an insurance claim.

The insurance adjuster will visit your house to inspect the damage, give you an estimate for the total value of the damage, and help you file the insurance claim with your company.

Step #5—Receive payment.

Once the paperwork is completed and approved, you will receive a check for the repairs from your insurance company, based on the adjuster’s assessment.

Step #6—Get estimates for repair.

Call at least 2-3 different contractors to look at the damage, and give you an idea of what it will cost to repair. Ask them to provide you with a written estimate of both labor and materials. (Your ReeceNichols agent can give you a referral to a trusted contractor—or ask a friend for a recommendation. Beware of “storm scammers” who visit your area after a storm, preying on damage victims.)

Step #7—Perform the repair work.

Once you choose the contractor who best fits your budget and quality expectations, make sure they perform all work to your satisfaction. (Remember: you should not be expected to pay for a contractor’s work until after it’s completed, and you’ve signed off on it.)

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