When it comes to storm damage, homeowners tend to have plenty of questions surrounding the inspection, repair, and payment processes. At Kiser Construction, we understand navigating the process of repairing a damaged home can be downright stressful and confusing. We’re here to help. Below, we’ve outlined a few of our most frequently asked questions about storm damage inspections, repairs, and insurance claims, and as always, if you have further questions, don’t hesitate to give us a call!
I think my home sustained damage during a storm. What should I do?
There are generally no specific requirements on which companies you can use for your policy, so if you think your property sustained hail, water, wind, or any other type of storm damage, get in touch with a reputable contractor to schedule a damage inspection at your earliest convenience.
Allowing the existing damage to remain unrepaired can result in further deterioration of your home, so prompt attention is critical. Once you have made the appointment and get an assessment completed, you can notify your insurance company and let them know about the situation.
Should I fix it myself or file a claim?
If the damage is severe and you can open a claim, this is generally the best option but requires having a company that will understand how to give a proper estimate. Without the right tools and education, fixing the repair yourself may cost you more because you could overlook different types of damages. Following the claim with the insurance company means you will have it done professionally with a complete restoration.
Why do I need an inspection for storm damage repairs?
If you are filing a claim with your homeowner’s insurance company for the repairs, you have a short window during which you can file. To get your claim approved and the repairs scheduled, you must know the extent of the damage your home sustained, as well as the projected cost of repairs.
If you file your claim outside of the insurer’s filing window, you will be responsible for covering the full cost of any necessary repairs. That’s why it’s so important to schedule a damage inspection as soon as possible after the storm.
Do I need a restoration company to do the inspection, or is the insurance adjuster enough?
There are some scenarios where the damage is minimal and having an adjuster is enough. But, if the damage is extensive, the insurance company may require you to find a contractor. For your benefit, having a professional assess the repairs will give the insurance company a more accurate understanding of what needs to be addressed.
Choosing a professional contractor will provide written documentation and photos of any damaged areas, which can help support your claim with the insurance company. And when this is combined with the adjuster's assessment, it can result in a much faster repair.
Can I get multiple inspections or project bids?
Absolutely! In fact, requesting multiple inspections and bids from reputable repair contractors is a common practice. We recommend getting at least three repair estimates from contractors with both insurance claims experience and a track record for performing high-quality storm damage repairs.
Common Insurance Repair Concerns
Will my insurance premiums go up if I file a claim?
In most states, insurance companies cannot increase your premiums when you file an “Act of God” damage claim, which includes damages caused by wind, hail, tornadoes, and other weather conditions that were out of your control.
If your home flooded during a storm, your homeowner's insurance won’t cover the cost of damage repairs, which is why having flood insurance is also important. Accidental house fires are usually not considered “Acts of God” since they can typically be prevented by the homeowner.
How long do I have to file a storm damage claim with my insurance company?
Filing windows vary by insurance company, but generally, you have 12-24 months to file your claim. That said, allowing any existing damage to remain unrepaired for several months will likely result in further damage to the structure of your home.
Is it unwise to hire the most affordable contractor to fix my house?
Generally, yes. For the most part, you get what you pay for. If your insurance company is covering the cost of repairs, it’s always in your best interest to hire a storm damage repair company that provides high-quality materials, workmanship, and customer service.
Can I trust door-to-door contractors?
It’s always a good idea to be wary of contractors that come knocking on your door after a storm. If you get an inspection from a door-to-door contractor, make sure you do your research on the company before moving forward. Check their rating with the BBB, read customer reviews, and make sure the contractors are licensed and insured. It’s never a bad idea to get additional inspections from two to three other repair contractors.
Will my homebuilder’s warranty cover the cost of repairs if my home is fairly new?
Unfortunately, no. Homebuilder and contractor warranties are designed to cover issues with materials and workmanship, not damage caused by factors that are beyond the builders’ and contractors’ control. Storm damage is almost always a named exclusion in these types of warranties.
Kiser Construction: Your Twin Cities Source for Comprehensive Storm Damage Repair
If your home suffered damage during a storm, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team at Kiser Construction for help. Our contractors are experienced, licensed, and insured, and we can also work with your insurance company to ensure you get the coverage you deserve. To learn more about our services or schedule an appointment, call our Elk River office today at 763-633-2010 or send us a message with your questions, and we’ll be in touch.
If your home recently suffered damages as a result of a fire, flood, or storm, and you need emergency restoration services, please call us on our 24/7 emergency line at 612-518-8852.