Tips to Make Sure Your Fire Claim is Approved


One of the most common cause of damage to any property or home is when it is ravaged by fire. Fires can ignite from poor wiring, a gas stove left open, and a heater mistakenly not turned off, a burning dish or even a backyard fire that has gone out of hand. Fires are powerful beings, when they start to burn, they will devour all that it come into contact with. Sometimes, it is human error, or an accident and sometimes the fire did not even start from your home. Whatever the case may be, fires also have the potential to be fatal, and there are more people who die from smoke inhalation than the fire itself. Moreover, if the fire did not completely burn down your home or property, the damage to it brought about by the smoke, soot and any other chemicals produced by the fire will make your home unlivable. Fires are fairly common, which is why building regulations require that a building should have an exit, firefighting tools, smoke detectors and water sprinklers. All of which is used to put out a fire before it becomes uncontrollable. And the government requires that homes and any other real property must have fire insurance. It is almost impossible to own a property and not have a fire insurance policy. Thus, if you ever find yourself in a fire, then there are many important points that you should take note to make a fire claim

Fires can be likened to a raging beast, it destroys everything in its path, even with the best firefighters, and fires have a mind of its own and will only stop when it has nothing left to burn. After the fire, it is only when you will see the massive damage that it has done to your property.  You need to inspect the damage the fire has done to your home, to your belongings, and even to the structure of the house. Most new and modern structures are easily burned by the fire while the older homes that are made of concrete and bricks will probably have better chances in terms of structure. If the house was not totally burned down, there might be things that can be saved, but more often than not a fire damages everything. In the event that the fire has not totally destroyed the building or the house, you still have to contend with the damage brought about by soot, ash and smoke that is still quite a handful to worry about and these damages are far more difficult to fix than making the decision to take out all the damaged structures and replace them. Your insurance provider can help you recover from the fire, but only if you are able to make a successful fire claim. 

What is a Fire Claim?

If ever you find yourself a victim of a fire, and your home or property have been destroyed and damaged by a fire, then you can file for a fire claim, but you need to make sure that you have an updated fire insurance policy. A fire claim is your application to your insurance provider to claim the amount insured of your property in cases when it is damaged by fire. You need to determine the value of the insurance policy and this amount is the maximum amount that you can claim from the insurance company. However, you need to first determine what insurance coverage is included in your policy. You might have a policy that covers only your home, or it may include external structures and it may even have a clause for living expenses. Whatever policy you have it is best that you get to understand what it is and how much it is worth to you and your home. 

Fires are fatal and it is nothing short of a miracle that no one died in the fire that ravaged your home. Now imagine having to drag yourself and making a brave attempt at making sure that your fire claim will be accepted and approved by the insurance provider. Filing a fire claim requires a lot of documents and reports and you can expect the insurance company to try their best to avoid paying you the maximum amount your house is insured for. In order to get the most out of your insurance policy, you need to have a fire claim adjuster on your side.

What is a Fire Claim Adjuster? 

Public fire claim adjusters are licensed and authorized by the state to advocate for the property owner who has to file a fire claim. The public adjuster provide a number of expert services that will make sure that the insurance company pays the maximum amount for the restoration and repair of the burned property or home. The public adjuster can be the in between with the insurance company and the insurance policy holder. It is a sad reality that insurance agents are quick to sell you insurance policies, but it is actually quite stressful to have them pay you in cases when you try to make a claim. The public adjuster will handle all of these things for the policy holder and you do not even have to meet the insurance company representatives. The adjuster makes sure that each form and report that is needed to file the fire damage claim is accurately done, he or she will personally file the said claim, and will make all necessary actions to ensure that you will be compensated appropriately considering the loss that you have incurred due to the fire. 

What Services Do Fire Claim Adjusters Provide? 

Most fire claim adjusters offer the same extensive services designed to help the property owner get the most out of their insurance policies. However, the difference between a good adjuster to an excellent one is in how they perform their services and the results that they provide. The services include a complete listing and assessment of the damaged property and its content, as well as the evaluation of damages that may not be apparent after the fire and also a comprehensive identification of the losses incurred due to the fire, ash, soot, smoke and debris. The fire claim adjuster will also be the key communication point between the property owner and the insurance company. 

Be Aware of Fake Adjusters 

Insurance companies also hire fire claim adjusters and will recommend them to the property owner filing for a fire claim, but these fake adjusters work for the insurance company and instead will make it their goal to give the lowest valuation to your claims. In order to avoid fake public adjusters, hire someone that you know are legit and not associated with any insurance company. 

How to File a Fire Claim 

In order to make a fire claim, one needs to make sure that you have an existing insurance policy that covers fire damage on your house, business or any other property. If your policy is not updated and then it is not a binding policy, then the chances of being able to file a fire damage claim is null and void to begin with. The first thing you need to do after being devastated by a fire is to track down any copy of your insurance policy or any proof that your policy exists such as a contract or a certificate. Next, you need to examine the small print in your policy and check the maximum amount you could get for the coverage and what situations are covered in which you can make a claim. Insurance policies may have the same basic terms but different providers have also specific clauses that may not be true to other policies, instead of getting confused with the suggestions and inputs of family and friends, just hire a public adjuster and save you the trouble of all these processes

What Is The Coverage of the Fire Claim? 

Insurance companies offer varied insurance coverage and your policy could either be a basic one that has limited coverage or a combination of one or more policies, or even a comprehensive one. The most common policy is the coverage for only the main home or dwelling, such that anything that is basically in and under your home is insured. Any damage and future damage to any of the identified areas can be included in the fire claim. The second policy type has a coverage for additional structures aside from the main dwelling. This would mean that any structures separate from the main house are included in the policy. The third type of coverage includes personal belongings, this would mean that everything that the family had been using during and in the event of the fire and those that belong to the family can be included in the claim. Lastly, is the coverage for living costs, this meant that the insurance company has to compensate you for your living expenses after the fire since you can no longer stay in your home. Try to determine which coverage you have first so you can also file the appropriate fire claims on your property. 

Experts Needed in Making a Fire Claim

Industrial Hygienist 

Before you can file a fire damage claim from your insurance providers, you need to have your home or property assessed by an industrial hygienist in terms of whether the property is safe to inhabit. The hygienist has to conduct three different samplings from your damaged property to measure the presence and level of toxins and other harmful chemicals in your home and to decide the best course of action to address the problem. 

Chemical Analysis 

The industrial hygienist is responsible for checking the integrity of the property in terms of potential hazards the burned property has sustained. The experts would have to conduct chemical sampling in the property after it has been damaged by the fire. The testing has to be done in three ways, the first one is called tape sampling, in which the hygienist would get a sample of the various surfaces in the home to determine the contaminants in the area. The second is called vacuum sampling in which the hygienist has to get a sample from the furniture, floors coverings, wall coverings and other soft areas which could have been permeated with chemicals and harmful substances. The last one is air sampling in which the air is tested for any possible chemicals and toxins that could be left after the fire. The samples are submitted to an independent testing laboratory and the results of which will help determine the overall cost of the damage.

How to Make a Successful Fire Claim

The effect of fires to the homeowners can be long-term and traumatic to say the least. It would take a lot of time before the fire survivors can begin to resume their normal lives, and getting their home back would be a huge help in the healing process. But, the difficulty of making a fire claim successfully and getting the most out of their insurance policies can also make it more trying to get back his or her life on track. The secret formula to this dilemma is to hire a firm that will make the fire claim, conduct all the necessary tests and prepare all the needed documents and reports and be present in all the meetings and interviews with the insurance provider. What is needed for your public adjuster to work for your best interest is for you to actually trust that he or she is looking out for your interests and trying to get the best deal from the insurance provider. You however, need a public adjuster that has an intricate understanding of the policies and laws governing insurance claims in your area. Different state have very different definitions and policies regarding this, so you need to hire a local firm, one that you can interact and communicate with readily. Communication is crucial to the success for any transaction and you need a public adjuster who is comfortable communicating with you all the time.