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Hurricane insurance adjuster advice

Old 10-09-2018, 05:50 AM
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Default Hurricane insurance adjuster advice

So we live in Wilmington and had some damage from Florence. Roof lost alot of shingles down to bare wood, couple of those roof vents ripped completely off, gutters down, etc. Not as bad as some but still needs addressing. Our crawlspace got filled with water and it looks like the inside of ac ducts got filled with water and then they all fell down into crawl space. I stayed at the house the whole time and the water level never rose up to point where it could've flooded the crawl space so I think the water got blown in thru the ac system. (105mph winds) We have already paid almost $5000 to have the crawl space re encapsulated, mold treated and all the ac ducts replaced. Obviously we are trying to recoup as many costs as possibly from the damage from this storm and have the house repaired.

Also at some point in the middle of night when it was blowing hard one of our back windows must have creeped down a little and a bunch of water blew in on our new wood floors. I saw it a couple hours later and cleaned it all up and made sure window was latched good. But it made the floors buckle and get all wavy.

We don't have flood insurance, finally have an appointment with an adjuster on Thursday, when talking briefly on the phone he said that they weren't covering any damage from flooding, but I told him the wind blew the rain and water inside the crawl space and ac ducts. He replied with a concerning " we will see" Guy kinda had an attitude and I realize he has alot on his plate and alot more people are worse off, but bottom line is we pay our insurance premium every month for this exact reason, so cool it with the attitude.

So neither has had to deal with insurance adjusters for any kind of home repair and I think there's alot of people on here that have had experience with storm damage and insurance so i'm reaching out for some help.

Any advice on what to say and not say regarding the water in the crawl space and ac ducts? Anything else I'm forgetting or should mention?
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Old 10-09-2018, 05:54 AM
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This was my first time dealing with an adjuster. I had my contractor meet him at my house at the same time so it worked out good. The adjuster seemed anxious to get to the next claim and was easy to work with. They don't want a bad name for themselves during this time.
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Old 10-09-2018, 05:58 AM
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Right now they are paying for ANYTHING they can. You shouldn't have much trouble but if you do just escalate the claim.
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Old 10-09-2018, 06:08 AM
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Went through it with Irma on our Cudjoe Key house. It was our first time. Insurance is settled now, but still waiting for the a-hole contractor to finish the rebuild, but that is another story.

Here's how ours went. Adjuster showed up. Went through entire house to document damage. It really didn't matter what I said to them, they had their own procedures. I did answer questions and provide info as best I could. Eventually, 2 months later the report came out. We then showed the report to a contractor to see if we could get it done for that amount. NO. Back to adjuster with contractor bid, another 2 months, then a new report is issued giving us what we asked for. So, ours came out okay, I know not everybody's did. We also had a separate flood policy so that was a separate adjuster. In our case it was easy to see the high water mark from the staining of the doors and walls. In our case, a stilted home, flood paid nothing, it was all windstorm damage up top.

For now I guess my best advice is to be civil, wait for them to give you their report, then fight it if necessary with valid info like contractor bids. It won't be resolved the day he shows up. Also, the advice I got was to not hire a Public Adjuster but do hire an attorney who specialized in fighting claims if the need arises. There was much discussion on here last year about the pros and cons of a PA.

good luck.
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Old 10-09-2018, 06:14 AM
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In the industry as an agent, so some knowledge of the process.

How do you think the AC system allowed water into the duct work? All duct work in craw spaces we had damaged, we a direct result of flooding. Was any of your neighbors houses damaged by flood waters?

NC Mike is right that right after a storm, most adjusters look for coverage instead of exclusions.
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Old 10-09-2018, 06:24 AM
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adjusters think the contractor is cheating them, contractor think the adjusters are being cheap.
after a two month battle on a hurricane 30 years ago after my wife threw a fit the adjuster said in front of the contractor, and shrugged, "well how about another 10,000" that a fixed it
adjusters get paid by the job, they want to go to the next one.
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Old 10-09-2018, 06:35 AM
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our ac unit is combined (compressor setup/blower for the vents, and its outside and it is basically plumbed to the crawl space with sheetmetal, the sheet metal has worked free from wind and age and i believe it allowed the water to get blown in the main trunk.
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Old 10-09-2018, 06:44 AM
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I would meet with the adjuster before calling an independent claims guy. But have all your ducks in a row when he gets there. Pictures and documention go a long way to get claims settled faster. If after you meet with him and get his settlement you don't think it's fair I would consider getting an adjuster.

If you are only having a disagreement on price that is in the ballpark. I would get a quote or two showing him he is too low. If it is a disagreement on whether something is covered or not where they say something is not covered and you think it is then I would bring in the independent adjuster.

Flood is outside water rising into the space. So try to document how you think the water was blown into the space and wasn't outside water flowing into the space. Photos of where the water reached not getting to those spaces will go a long way.
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Old 10-09-2018, 07:15 AM
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Certainly how the water got in is important. If by flooding then yes, having flood insurance will be what covers this, if you can find where the wind and rain intruded into the HVAC ducting, then get it documented and submitted and your NCIU Wind/Hail should cover it.

It's a stressful time for all of us but also be calm and collected, don't go emotional in times like this. The adjusters out here running around are doing a job, some not so great, but for the most part are also undeservingly getting railed on by people for no reason. So when you meet your adjuster, they could have just come from an ass chewing by the previous folks, show a little patience. I'm not standing up for them but just watched one get his ass chewed this past weekend by the folks across the street because they don't understand that they can't claim damages through him because they are renters, he was responding to the claims put in by the homeowner.
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Old 10-09-2018, 09:21 AM
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Most policies require exterior damage to cover interior water damage. Your damages under the house resemble what flooding would do. Your probably going to need to show proof that there was no flooding in your area.
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Old 10-09-2018, 10:13 AM
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Had much damage to two of my homes in the Fl.Keys and Broward county,fl. after Irma. I also was pleased with myself for purchasing "loss of income" insurance on my keys' home which is a rental property. After 1yr. and hiring a public adjuster from day 1 I was given $0 for both homes. My demand for the loss of income was completely ignored despite the fact that it has been a year since Irma with my Kitchen still being finished as it is nearly impossible to get workers in the Keys.After large damage reports (over $100K) in one house and a years passing,my adjuster called me last night to recommend hiring a lawyer as he did all he could do. On my Broward residence I was given the same advice last month with a different ins. co.and adjuster.
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Old 10-09-2018, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by fishingfun View Post
Most policies require exterior damage to cover interior water damage. Your damages under the house resemble what flooding would do. Your probably going to need to show proof that there was no flooding in your area.
Most HO-3 policies cover leaks without structural damage. Most dwelling and commercial polices don't.
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Old 10-09-2018, 10:34 AM
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It took a year for them to settle with us for Irma. They sent 3 different people out including an engineer who I think came just to dispute our claim. We just stayed the course and they finally sent a somewhat acceptable amount. Now we are just starting to get bids. Skindr it sounds like you need to call John Morgan. He promises that the insurance will pay you, and then pay him on top of it......
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Old 10-09-2018, 10:47 AM
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Hopefully your adjuster is a newb, or you'll likely get shorted.

I swear they get a bonus on claims that aren't high.
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Old 10-09-2018, 12:32 PM
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Meeting mine in the morning.

Tons of missing shingles, some water damage to the ceiling in a couple spots, lots of fencing issues from falling trees, bubbled up hardwoods in a couple locations, etc....I'm not looking forward to the meeting, but I'll be as nice as possible.
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Old 10-09-2018, 01:09 PM
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It's sad to say but anything to do with water is a lot times an automatic denied claim if you don't have flood insurance. Hopefully not but I know several folks that have been down the same road.Even if it was wind induced and water never rose to the levels of the house
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Old 10-09-2018, 05:04 PM
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sub'd for outcome
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Old 10-09-2018, 05:22 PM
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Originally Posted by NC Mike View Post
Right now they are paying for ANYTHING they can. You shouldn't have much trouble but if you do just escalate the claim.
This. A catastrophe is about the best time to have a claim. The problem people run into is if they don't have flood and want everything covered by wind or don't understand what is and is not covered by each policy. For instance, I have about $10K in flood damage but I know that since it is not my primary residence it's going to be settled based on ACV. I knew that going in and it is what it is.

Originally Posted by RJTaylor View Post
Hopefully your adjuster is a newb, or you'll likely get shorted.

.
Have to disagree. I just got thru with two flood adjusters and one wind adjuster and they were trying to find everything that they could. In fact, they get paid a fee for showing up and then a percentage of how large the claim is. Some people think that adjusters get paid based on ho much they can "cut" the claim. I don't believe it with the staff adjusters we work with on day to day basis but it is definitely not true with the "storm troopers". FEMA actually has a fee schedule.

2012_AdjFee_Schedule.pdf

Last edited by Shag; 10-09-2018 at 05:29 PM.
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Old 10-09-2018, 05:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Poppin cork View Post
I would meet with the adjuster before calling an independent claims guy.
Usually your catastrophe adjusters are independents. You may be thinking about a public adjuster.
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Old 10-09-2018, 06:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Shag View Post
Usually your catastrophe adjusters are independents. You may be thinking about a public adjuster.

I know. Just trying to keep it simple for the guy. Most people don't know the difference between public adjusters and who the company sends or not.

My main point is on claims always give the company a chance before hiring your own guy.
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