Ideally, before your home or business is damaged, you have had the chance to properly document the condition of your property. Most commonly, when insurance companies deny a claim, it is because the home or business owners failed to maintain accurate records to prove the condition of their property before the storm. For example, if you have installed a new roof 5 year ago that was guaranteed for 30 years, you will need to prove that your roof was in excellent condition and show proper documentation about its warrantee, or your insurance company depreciate the roof a lot more, as if it had a 10 years warranty and was in poor condition. In many cases, the insurance companies will reply with a claim denial for reasons like “pre-existing condition” or “failure to maintain”. What this means, is that they ‘believe’ your property was damaged before the event. The best way to avoid these scenarios is by thoroughly documenting the condition of your property ahead of time.
Most insurance companies will encourage you to take a home inventory. It is of course an excellent idea. It is easy enough to do, and will save a lot of hassle later on. However, they don’t really explain how to properly document the condition of the most expensive items in your home or business, like your windows and doors, your roof, kitchens and bathrooms, etc. Make sure you save recipes from any upgrades in a safe place. And take lots and lots of pictures.
Also, if your losses were substantial, don’t hesitate to talk to a professional loss consultant to avoid an insurance claim denial. Find a leading private property adjuster in our directory, and let them help you get the settlement you deserve.