Being a homeowner comes along with having to deal with unexpected incidents that may happen to your home such as fire, fallen trees, or theft. But, how do you know if you should file a homeowners claim for certain situations? This article will take you through the things to consider when you are thinking about filing a homeowners claim. If you are still unsure about when to file a homeowners insurance claim, let our licensed insurance agents in Ohio, Maryland, West Virginia, and Maryland answer your questions, as well as help find the best homeowners insurance policy for you!
Consider the following when deciding to file a claim:
Have you made a claim recently?
If you make a claim, your insurance company will add this claim to your Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (CLUE) report. Your CLUE report contains a history of claims you’ve made over the past 7 years. All insurance companies have access to this report, and most insurers will check this report when deciding how ‘risky’ you are, whether or not they will provide insurance to you, and the rate they will charge you.
How much is it to repair the damage and what is your deductible?
Filing a claim will most likely raise your premium. So, it may not be worth it to file a claim if the damage is worth less than your deductible. This is because in the long run, you will be paying more for your premium being raised than you would just paying out of pocket to repair the damage. In general, you should only file a claim if the cost of the repair is too high for you to pay on your own.
Learn here about how much homeowner’s insurance you might need.
Is the damage due to a maintenance issue or neglect?
Claims made for damage due to plumbing issues, an old roof, or other maintenance problems could be denied by your insurer. It’s best to take care of your house and make routine updates to avoid problems down the road.
Turning a homeowners claim denial into an approval
If your insurance company denies your claim, you should take a look at the written explanation of the denial and compare it to your homeowners insurance policy. Be sure that the claim you are making is covered by your policy.
If your claim is covered by your policy, the next thing you can do is present more evidence of the extent of the damage to your insurance company. More pictures of the damage, estimates of repair costs, or receipts of items damaged could be beneficial in getting the claim approved when asking the insurer to review it again.
Request an independent appraisal of the damage to get a second opinion on the costs of repairing the damage. This can show the insurance company a second opinion of just how much your damages will most likely cost you.
If you still can not come to an agreement with the insurance company on the claim, you may file a complaint with the state to investigate your denied claim. You may also contact an attorney for legal advice on the matter.
Can an insurance company drop you after a claim?
Yes, an insurance company can drop you after you make a claim or even before you make a claim. If your insurance company decides you are too high-risk, then they could cancel your policy.
When should I file a homeowners insurance claim?
You should file the homeowners insurance claim as soon as possible after determining it is appropriate and necessary to file a claim for the particular incident. Depending on your insurance company and the state you live in, your claim could be denied if you wait too long to file.
How do I file a claim against someone else’s homeowners insurance?
If you have been injured on someone else’s property, you may need to file a claim against their homeowners insurance. If the injury resulted due to the homeowners neglect you will need to obtain their insurance information from them. If the homeowners do not file a liability claim with their insurance provider, then you can go to the insurance provider yourself. Be sure to document the injury or accident with pictures or video so you have proof when filing the claim.
At Malhotra & Assoc. Insurance, we’re here to help answer any questions you have about your homeowners insurance policy. Contact our team of expert insurance agents to find a policy that fits you and your home’s specific needs!
Disclaimer: This blog post is meant for general informational purposes only and may not reflect your specific policy.
About the Author: Aidan has been a content expert for Malhotra & Assoc. Insurance for the past two years. Aidan is a recent graduate of MIami University in Oxford, OH. When she is not creating content for the insurance industry, Aidan is a Land Protection Professional with expertise in GIS technologies, easement acquisition and compliance, and conservation practices.