Before and After – Proper Planning Now Will Help Future Insurance Claims

Water damage is disruptive and expensive. When you suffer damage at your Magnolia home, proper records will help smooth your way. Whether you’re filing for insurance, seeking assistance, or claiming a casualty tax deduction, you will need proof of your losses. We at Total Restoration highly recommend you take some action now,  because you will want good records both before and after any disaster.

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Plan Ahead – Keep a Household Inventory

An up-to-date household inventory is a valuable resource. Before a disaster, the inventory will also help you determine if you have enough insurance to cover the contents of your home.  Capture a description of each item, any model and serial numbers, the cost and where purchased. Organize photos or make videos to accompany your inventory.

Be thorough; remember the lawn furniture and tools in the garage. Keep the process simple so that you will inventory up to date. Look for online guides, relevant forms and even apps for conducting a household inventory. 

Now secure this inventory PLUS your valuable papers in a waterproof, fireproof container outside your home. This could be in a safe deposit box, in the care of a lawyer, or with trusted family members residing in another home. Include property records, automobile titles, contracts, wills, powers of attorney, promissory notes, and paper certificates for stocks and bonds. Also include your original documents for identification: Social Security cards, passports, birth certificates and death certificates.

Alternatively, some documents are better stored at home in a locked box. This includes those documents that need to be readily available after a disaster when you may not be able to reach copies that are located in your other safe location. 

List your emergency contacts: doctors, vets, financial advisers, Total Restoration, and family members. Include:

  • Copies of insurance policies
  • Loan payment books
  • Employee benefits
  • Bank account, loan, credit card, investment account numbers
  • Health records such as copies of immunization records and insurance cards

After A Disaster- Support Your Insurance Claim

If you DO have an emergency at the house, having your household inventory and records will make it easier to make an insurance claim when you carefully document your losses. Using the original document as a starting point, make a detailed list of lost or damaged property. Videotape or photograph damaged property before beginning any repairs.

Do not throw away damaged property without your adjuster’s approval. 

Now for the paperwork tips AFTER a disaster:

  • Organize cleaning and repair bills: supplies, restoration services, materials, cost of rental equipment, and depreciation of purchased equipment.
  • A list of any additional living expenses you incur if your home is so severely damaged that you have to find other accommodations while repairs are being made: motel receipts, restaurant bills, home rental, or car rental.
  • Don’t be in a hurry to settle your claim. Although you may want to be over as quickly as possible, sometimes it takes time to discover all the damage. Damages overlooked in an early estimate may become apparent later. If you are dissatisfied with the settlement offer, talk things over with your agent and adjuster.

Partner with Total Restoration In Magnolia

Every minute counts after home water damage; contact us to get the immediate help that you need. No matter the size, scope, or source of the water loss, the team is trained, certified, and ready to help. 

After the damage has been mitigated, repairs may be necessary. Total Restoration is a full-service contractor and can make any repairs for you, leaving your home in excellent condition when we leave. From drywall, flooring, cabinets, and even painting, we are here to help every step of the way.