During the summer, many parts of the country can be hit with some harsh weather, and the American Southwest is no exception. Indeed, residents of southern Arizona were pelted with high winds and other storm activity that led to plenty of damage. That, in turn, will probably end up resulting in plenty of home insurance claims being filed across the region, and experts say that it’s important for people to carefully assess their situations before getting in contact with an insurer. Agents who can highlight the reasons why this is important to people who have been victimized by this type of damage could end up doing plenty of good for all parties involved.
It’s not yet clear just how much damage these storms did, but they were widespread enough to mobilize insurance agents in the area, according to a report from the Arizona Daily Star. However, much of the damage seemed to be things that home insurers handle with little difficulty.
“The good news: A typical homeowner’s policy provides coverage for direct damage caused by wind and storms,” said Victor Hugo Rodriguez, a spokesman for a major home insurer, according to the newspaper. “We would like to encourage everyone impacted by this storm to contact their insurance agent to ask questions and report damage as soon as possible. Take the time now to review your insurance policies, ask questions and be thorough when hiring a contractor.”
What needs to be done?
When it comes to filing a claim after such an accident, experts generally recommend a number of steps for homeowners to take, the report said. For instance, people should generally try to carefully document – with video and pictures – the extent of the damage, and only remove debris and make minor repairs once that has been done and it appears safe to proceed. In addition, when doing work on their own, before talking to a contractor, they should keep track of all the receipts for the materials they use, because those could be covered by their home insurance policies as well.
Finally, if they are approached by a door-to-door salesman offering to do repair work, they should be extremely cautious, the report said. Often, these are simply scam artists trying to take advantage of the tough situation.
What can agents do in the meantime?
If insurance agents can help people deal with the ins and outs of their home insurance coverage, including what is and isn’t something they can claim based on their current policies, that’s likely to be good for both sides. That’s because people will generally have a better idea of what they need to do when it comes to their policies, and also feel good about what they can expect from their insurer going forward. That, in turn, will typically lead to better feeling about the relationship in general, and engender a greater willingness to stick with an insurer. Studies show that when people have a good rapport with their agents, they tend to feel good about their policies and shop around less often.