To file a Water Damage Insurance Claim or not to…that is the question

homeowner's insurance water damageWhen your home or business suffers a water intrusion, often times your first reaction is to call your insurance company and file a claim. But is that always the right step?

Most people don’t know that if you call your insurance company and open up a claim, it is counted as a claim whether or not the insurance company pays out a penny or not. So if you end up cancelling your claim or your claim gets denied, it still counts as a claim which could cause your rates to increase or cause issues for you in the future if you are shopping for new homeowner’s insurance.

Here are 4 Important things to consider before filing an insurance claim for Water Damage

  1. What was the source of the water loss?

Unless you have a separate “flood” writer on your insurance policy, any water that comes in from the outdoors is typically not a covered loss. So during monsoon season when you have a flash flood that runs down your street and through your home, you aren’t covered.

  1. Was the water loss caused by an accidental or sudden water discharge?

Under standard insurance policies, the water loss has to be either accidental OR a sudden water discharge in order for it to be covered. If it is instead a slow water leak that went undetected or water from the outside, there is rarely coverage.

An example of an accidental water loss would be: you are filling up the bathtub, you lie down on the bed to rest while it is filling and fall asleep. You wake up 4 hours later to a flooded home – typically covered

An example of a sudden water discharge would be: The toilet supply line bursts in the middle of the day and floods for 3 hours before you return home from work – typically covered

An example of a slow water leak would be: The ice maker line behind your refrigerator has a slow leak in the wall behind the refrigerator. You only notice it when you start seeing mold growth on the wall on the other side of the refrigerator – typically not covered

  1. Is the cost of the water damage mitigation and repairs more than my deductible?

This may not be something you know until you have a professional water damage mitigation company come out and assess the damage. It is always a good idea to have a restoration company come out to evaluate the damage, after all they have all of the proper tools and instruments to discover hidden water damage and hidden pockets of water that you may not be able to detect on your own. A good restoration company will give you an honest evaluation and explain to you whether or not it is in your best interest to file a claim.

  1. You don’t have to decide immediately if you are going to file a claim or not.

Your first priority should be to properly mitigate and minimize the damages. You can determine at a later time if it is in your best interest to file an insurance claim. Just make sure you are documenting all of the damage and steps you are taking to remedy the issue along the way because if you do file a claim, the insurance company will need that information.

If you find yourself in a situation where you are facing damage in your home or business and you aren’t sure who to call first or if you should file a claim or not, call a locally owned and operated company that cares.

Call Lotus Contracting Services, LLC at 480-500-5481. We will come out and evaluate your water loss and give you an honest evaluation on whether or not we would recommend you filing a claim.

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