One Disaster is Enough. Your Claim Doesn’t Need to Be!
Fire damage claims can be devastating. Even something as small as kitchen fire can be a change in your life for a while. Some of the causes of loss to someone property include the following.
- Holiday lighting failure
- Faulty wiring
- Appliance fire
- Chimney fire
- Smoke backdraft from a fireplace
- Smoke damage to your house from the neighbor’s fire
- Puffback from your heater
What Is Fire Damage?
Fire damage to a property is a result of burning. This damage may either be caused by the flames or can occur due to smoke and other corrosive substances caused by the fire.
Fire damage is usually divided into the following categories:
- Class A: fire that involves flammable solids, such as paper, cloth, wood, and plastics.
- Class B: fire that involves flammable liquids or solids that can turn into liquids.
- Class C: fire that involves flammable gasses, such as propane, hydrogen, natural gas, and butane.
- Class D: fire that involves combustible metals, including sodium, magnesium, and potassium.
- Class E: fire that involves factors in Class A and B as well as electrical elements.
- Class F: relatively hotter and more destructive fire that involves cooking oils and fats.
Also, many insurance companies divide fire damage into two categories:
- Primary – caused by flames
- Secondary – caused by smoke or other substances from the fire
What Types of Damage Do Home Fires Cause?
- Kitchen fires: According to the National Fire Protection Association, cooking is the leading cause of home fires and fire injuries, and is the second leading cause of home fire deaths. Because cooking is routine, it can be easy to forget the high temperatures and dangers involved. The most common type of kitchen fire is a grease fire.
- Cigarette-related fires: Each year, over a thousand people die in fires started by cigarettes.
- Electrical fires: They may be started by damaged or outdated electrical wiring, incorrect outlet usage, or worn-out breaker boxes.
- Heater fires: It is especially common during the winter months when more people use their non-portable heaters.
Is Fire Damage Covered By A Homeowners’ Insurance Policy?
Typically, homeowners’ insurance covers accidental fires in and around the home. And since the home is one of the biggest investments, if a fire damages it, it’s important that the homeowner be protected. That’s what homeowners’ insurance coverage is for.
How Does Home Insurance Work with a Fire?
None of us want to think about damage to the home, but fire and related damages are one of the top causes of large claims. It’s important that your home is properly insured in case of fire damage or other types of disasters. Carefully review your policy to understand what is or isn’t covered and discuss your options with your insurance provider or agent. Additionally, you may want to see if you can bundle your homeowners’ insurance with another type of policy—such as auto insurance—to save money.
Are There Different Homeowners Insurance Coverages?
There are many types of home insurance coverage. Talk to an agent about the coverages available to help repair or rebuild your home if it’s damaged by fire. Your insurance company or agent will usually ask about the size of your home, the interior finishes, and the estimated value of your personal belongings. You can then choose between two types of coverage:
- Replacement cost value (RCV): If you elect to fully repair or replace your damaged property, you’ll be reimbursed for the cost. Your policy limits the maximum dollar amount payable.
- Actual cash value (ACV): The estimated value of the item lost or damaged—in this case, your home—based on its condition immediately prior to the loss. This is typically calculated as RCV minus depreciation.
Generally, a homeowners policy also includes other types of coverages, including:
- Dwelling coverage: Repair or rebuilding costs of the structure of your home when disaster strikes
- Other structures coverage: Applies to detached structures, such as garages, sheds, or fences on your property
- Personal property coverage: Furnishings, clothing, and electronics
- Loss of use coverage: If you need to move out of your home while it’s being repaired or rebuilt, this would cover additional living expenses.
- Personal liability coverage: This covers you in the event of a claim and can help cover legal defense costs if you or a household member is responsible for property damage or injury to others.
Is Smoke Damage Covered By Insurance?
Smoke may damage a part of or your entire house even if the fire was put out quickly. Sometimes, damage could cause the homeowner to leave the home while it is being cleaned or repainted. Smoke damage is covered by a homeowners policy even if the smoke is from a neighbor’s home. Some of the common things that smoke could damage are your furniture and walls.
How Can A Public Adjuster Help Me If I Have A House Fire?
When you file a homeowners insurance claim, your insurer will send out an adjuster to look at the damage and determine a claim payout. Under the best circumstances, your payout will be determined by the cost to repair or replace a damaged structure or property.
A public adjuster can help you with the claims process and ensure that your payout is fair and an accurate reflection of the damage and your coverage. The adjuster is an independent trained insurance professional that can help with the claim process.
Unlike an insurance company adjuster, a public adjuster works exclusively for the insurance policyholders. In most cases, the financial interests of insurance companies are best served by convincing policyholders to accept the lowest payback possible, whereas the financial interests of public adjusters are directly tied to the interests of policyholders, so they are able to get full and fair compensation on insurance claims.
Public adjusters are often more thorough in their damage analysis than company adjusters. That’s because of their training and also because their loyalties are with the policyholder, and not the insurance company.
What Does a Public Adjuster Do?
As an independent insurance professional, a public adjuster works for the policyholder to make sure the claim is settled in a fair and timely manner. Their role can include:
- Evaluating damages and estimating the cost and time it will take to repair or replace the damaged structures.
- Helping you understand your insurance policy, tracking the claim, completing documents, and meeting deadlines.
- Acting as a liaison between the insurer, and any third parties such as attorneys or witnesses.
- Negotiating with your insurance company to achieve a fair payout.
When Should You Hire a Public Adjuster?
There’s really no set time regarding when you should hire a public adjuster, but there are some situations that make it worth considering:
- You’re filing a large, valuable claim for significant damage to your home, like a fire.
- You aren’t confident with the assessment performed by your insurer’s adjuster.
- You feel your insurer’s adjuster underestimated your claim or that your payout isn’t fair.
- You need assistance with a complex claim or the claims process.
Hire AllClaims For Your Fire Damage Claims
When it comes to fire damage, depending on the extent can be overwhelming. That is where AllClaims Adjustment Company comes in. We use our past experience of handling similar claims as well as almost a quarter of a century of construction knowledge and put it to work for you.
We know the local building codes and estimate the damages accordingly. We can recommend emergency services such as board-ups or temporarily tarping roofs as needed. We can organize a place to stay in case your home is inhabitable. We have handled many of these claims and know what you are entitled to.
It pays to have an expert insurance public adjuster handle the details when it comes to such a major loss. We can help you get your fire claim settlement to where you need it to be. If you have any type of fire damage to your home, call (267) 567-7784 or fill out this form for a free property inspection.
Call us today at (267) 567-7784!