Although home insurance is one of the most critical kinds of insurance, it can get complicated. It is no surprise that many homeowners make mistakes when seeking it. Things are tough if you experience extensive damage. Here are a few of the most common home insurance mistakes.
1. Failure to read and understand the policy
At the very least, you need to understand what your home insurance policy entails. While going through the policy may not be your favorite thing, it may be necessary.
Ensure that you understand the different coverages in your policy and what they offer. Water backup coverage, for example, is often mistaken for flood insurance. However, it only covers damage resulting from a sewer drain backup.
Failure to read or understand your home insurance policy is setting yourself up for confusion and disappointment. This guide has more helpful information.
2. Failure to get the appropriate coverage
Since every homeowner is unique, they have special coverage needs. Most home insurance mistakes happen before the occurrence of a loss.
The biggest one is having the wrong coverage. If you don’t have the right coverage, you might as well not have home insurance at all. You may need to pay out of pocket in the event of damages.
If, for example, you expect to be paid replacement costs, it doesn’t make sense to get actual cash value coverage. Don’t assume that your policy automatically covers you against flood water and hurricane winds.
When unsure, asking your insurance provider is a great idea. Find out if there are any exclusions that could come back to bite you.
3. Poor communication
Ensure that you have reliable ways to communicate with your insurance providers. When you need to make a claim, reach out to them as soon as possible. If you wait too long, your claim may be unsuccessful.
Another communication error is when describing damage to your property. It is best if you are clear and accurate. Errors in the description can bog down the whole process.
4. Failure to document damage
If your property is damaged, you need to document details of the damage as accurately as possible. It may be challenging to get compensation if you have no proof of damages.
The best way to document your insurance damage is through photos and videos. Ideally, it would be best if you had the ‘before’ and ‘after’ photos of your home. It can go a long way in speeding up the claims process.
5. Cleaning up too soon
After an accident, you may be in a hurry to clean up and get on with your life. However, it is a huge mistake that could cost you a lot. If there was a flood or fire, don’t throw away the damaged items.
You’ll need them when pursuing compensation. Wait until your provider has documented all your damage. Ensure that you always have a comprehensive paper trail.
6. Attempting to handle big claims with no help
If you have a big, complicated, or expensive claim, don’t attempt to deal with it alone. Such claims can take several months, and you need professional help. A good lawyer will help deal with the massive paperwork and insurance adjusters.
You might need to seek the help of a public claims adjuster if the damage to your house is extensive. They’ll help you deal with the adjusters of your insurance provider, ensure you meet deadlines, and advise on the relevant documents. Most public insurance adjusters only charge about 20 percent of your insurance settlement.
Avoiding common home insurance mistakes is an easy way to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. Do some research, determine where you may be going wrong, and make the relevant changes.