Filing a homeowner’s insurance claim can be both stressful and confusing, especially when there is heavy damage that needs to be repaired as quickly as possible. This process determines how your home is repaired, and who will cover which portion of the costs to restore your house to its original, undamaged condition. Homeowners rightly want to protect themselves during what can be a frustrating process.
Many homeowners engage a public adjuster immediately at the onset of filing an insurance claim. This decision can have negative consequences that resonate throughout the entire repair process and may end with a repair that costs money the homeowners cannot afford to spend. Learn more about what a public adjuster is, and why getting an estimate from a reputable contractor such as A.J. Wells Roofing & Construction is a better way to protect yourself throughout the claims process* and the reconstruction of your home.
What Is a Public Adjuster?
Public adjusters have been part of the process for more than two decades. Originally, they were intended to offer a neutral third party to provide objective claims assessments in the case of necessary repairs. This is a fine concept that works in theory, but in practice, it often does not function as it should.
An unfortunate lack of oversight dilutes the usefulness and protective quality of a public adjuster. Even though these individuals are intended to provide reports on necessary repairs for an insurance company to cover, all too frequently, they do not have any background in construction, contracting, or building. Prior knowledge of what is required to rebuild a home is not required to attain a public adjuster license, meaning an inspection may not be thorough and complete to the same standard as someone with knowledge of how to rebuild a home, and the public adjuster may be more likely to underestimate the costs needed to complete the work. If this happens, repairs may be substandard or even incomplete because of the gap between their low-end estimate and the actual cost of the work.
Public Adjusters, Lawyers, and Insurance Agencies
One possibility that may occur is that a public adjuster does not wield much power against an insurance company. Instead, that public adjuster can work with a lawyer to achieve the required ends. Since both lawyers and public adjusters can receive a combined 40-50% of the claim, the homeowner can be left with little money to pay the contractor.
Contractors and the Insurance Claim Process
The only way a contractor can receive payment is by completing services to the client in a satisfactory manner. A contractor puts up the cost of materials and labor before they see a dime of payment. Because they have invested in the success of the repair operation, they have an expensive incentive motivating them to complete repairs to the client’s satisfaction.
When a contractor is performing repairs to your property, the insurance company must pay for costs actually incurred, not costs estimated by an adjuster who may never have lifted a hammer in their life. By contacting a public adjuster first, you may find gaps between the estimated repairs and the actual cost of fixing your home, and only by paying out of pocket will you bridge these gaps.
Contact A.J. Wells Roofing & Construction First
A reputable contracting company can serve you well when you first discover storm or water damage in your home. Contact A.J. Wells Roofing & Construction to find out how our quality workmanship and expertise in contracting can benefit you!
*A.J. Wells Roofing & Construction under Florida law is not permitted to act as a public adjuster for you. Our estimate will provide you with the most accurate information for you to submit to your insurance company.