If you have experienced severe damage to a home, car, boat or any property after a natural disaster such as Hurricane Isaac or Hurricane Sandy, there are important steps for you to take in order to receive the best possible return on your property value.  In order to efficiently process your insurance claim, you must first document the loss. Take photographs of the damaged property before making any repairs or changes.  In addition, photos of the property before the damage occurred will be beneficial for the adjuster to make comparisons in valuing the loss.  After properly documenting the damage, make necessary repairs to prevent further damage.  Make a list of each damaged item, describe the item, original cost, time and place of purchase or construction and estimated replacement cost.  Get more than one repair estimate, aside from your insurance company adjuster’s estimate.  You may want to obtain a public adjuster who can advise you throughout the process and understand how to increase the return you receive.  Public adjusters can be found online, through a state licensing board, or the National Association of Public Insurance Adjusters.

Summary of Steps to Take:

1.      Document the loss with photographs

2.      Make necessary repairs to prevent further damage

3.      Make a list of damaged property, original cost, and replacement cost

4.      Get several repair estimates

5.      Maintain a copy of all receipts for property purchased and repairs

6.      Decide whether a public adjuster would be in your best interests

 

Websites to estimate new home construction costs:

http://www.nahb.org/generic.aspx?genericContentID=169974

http://www.buildingjournal.com/residential-estimating.html

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