After a natural disaster or another insured event, your home insurance company will send out an adjuster to assess the damage. This person’s job is to determine how much money the insurance company should pay to repair or rebuild your home.
There’s no question that dealing with a home insurance adjuster can be a daunting task. They hold all the cards and It is important that you negotiate with this person in order to get the best possible settlement for your claim. In this article, we will discuss how to negotiate with a home insurance adjuster and get the most money possible for your claim.
Understand Your Policy
The first step in negotiating with your home insurance adjuster is to understand your policy. Your policy is a contract between you and the insurance company. It outlines what events are covered and how much the insurance company will payout.
If you don’t understand your policy, the adjuster will likely take advantage of you. Make sure you know what your policy covers and doesn’t cover before you start negotiating with the adjuster.
Get Several Estimates
Home insurance adjusters are trained to lowball claims.
The first thing you need to do is get an estimate of the repair or replacement costs from a contractor or another professional. This will give you a good idea of how much money you should be asking for from the insurance company. It can be beneficial to get more than one estimate to reaffirm the cost you are claiming to need.
Do not take the first offer from the insurance company. If you do, you will most likely be leaving money on the table. It is important to be persistent and negotiate with the insurance company until you reach a fair settlement.
Write a letter to your adjuster complaining about the low offer. Include copies of any paperwork you’ve gathered, and demand a response within a certain amount of time, such as five business days. Be courteous yet straightforward. Let your adjuster know that this offer will not cover your house repairs.
While calling your insurance claims adjuster is more convenient; nevertheless, writing an appeal is significantly better since it allows you to build a paper trail of the appeal.
Keep Good Records
Make sure to keep all receipts and records of the damage to your home. This will be important when you are negotiating with the insurance company. The adjuster will most likely ask to see these records, so it is important that you have them readily available.
Hire a Public Adjuster
If you are having trouble getting a fair settlement from the insurance company, you may want to consider hiring a public adjuster. A public adjuster is a professional who will advocate on your behalf and help you get the best possible settlement for your claim.
Next, you need to start negotiating with the insurance adjuster.
If the home insurance adjuster comes back with a lower offer than what you asked for, don’t be afraid to negotiate. Remember, they are trained to lowball claims so it is important that you stand your ground. Start by asking them why they came up with that number.
Show Evidence of Damage
It is also important that you be prepared to show the adjuster evidence of the damage.
This can include photos, receipts, or estimates. The more evidence you have, the better your chances are of getting a higher settlement from the insurance company.
Ask to Speak to Their Supervisor
If the home insurance adjuster still will not budge, you can try asking to speak to their supervisor.
In some cases, the supervisor may be more willing to negotiate a higher settlement for you. If not, you can always take your claim to mediation or small claims court.
Dealing with a home insurance adjuster doesn’t have to be a nightmare. By following these tips, you can be sure that you are getting the best possible settlement for your claim.
Have you ever had to deal with a home insurance adjuster? What tips would you add to this list? Share your thoughts in the comments below.