The Insurance Claims Environment When Massive Catastrophes Occur
Considering the major catastrophes that have occurred during the latter half of 2017 in our country, it’s the appropriate time to talk about the insurance claims process and how catastrophes of this nature affect people who have basically lost everything.
The hurricanes that affected the Texas Gulf Coast, Houston, the State of Florida, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands and the devastating California wildfires have created total mayhem when it comes to insurance claims being filed by people just trying to get back on their fee.
The Purpose of Insurance
The very basics of insurance are to get you back (as closely as possible) to where you were before the loss, not beyond where you were before the loss. Insurance has its up and downs but anytime you have claims from a catastrophic situation it is even more tenuous.
It’s very difficult whenever you have catastrophic events like we’ve had. The small towns of Rockport and Aransas Pass on the Texas Gulf Coast had a great deal of damage. This was the area where the eye of Hurricane Harvey made landfall. These areas had sustained winds of over 100 mph and gust up to 130 to 140 mph. These sustained winds produce a lot of damage and that is where most of the insurance claims come from.
Then, there was the massive flooding in Houston, so the devastation of the properties is just incredible for the state of Texas.
When you alone are trying to get your house, (not even talking about the businesses at this point), back to the point where you can live in it again, think about this, not only you, but everyone in the community has lost their home. All of a sudden, the need for contractors, the need for carpenters or the need for plumbers is exponential.
A single house fire, compared to this type of devastation does not even come close. When insurance companies are receiving claims by the truckload, it is a very different situation.
When you have a single loss, it’s pretty easy to go out and hire a contractor or plumber, you might even have a whole group of people to hire; but in an area where you have a catastrophic loss, you and 500 or more other people are in need of services to get you back to normal living conditions.
With that being said, if you have a house fire now in San Antonio, Austin or El Paso for that matter, it would be very difficult to find those contractors to get your back on your feet because everyone is going into these devastated areas to help them rebuild.
The Sacrifice of the Insurance Adjuster and Contractor
The interesting thing about these artisan contractors going into these areas that have been affected is they are dealing with the devastation as well, such as no working sewer system, no drinking water, no electricity and let’s not forget about the mosquitos.
Yes, the work provides them with a living, but not all insurance adjusters or contractors want to go into this type of atmosphere where it’s dirty, nasty and uncomfortable. It is admirable, and you should appreciate adjusters and contractors that go out into those situations and live in those adverse conditions. They are human too. They are there to help rebuild regardless of the situation.
Here is what you can do if you have been affected by any of these catastrophes. Be patient. Remember, whenever the insurance adjuster goes out to assist you with the damage to your property, they’re independent adjusters coming in doing the best they can.
People may believe, and say, they don’t want to pay as much as they should but that just isn’t true. Adjusters are not affiliated, most of the time, with the insurance company. They are coming in to and seeing what needs to be done; So help the adjuster as much as you can by providing them with the information they need so they can do their job. Be patient and kind to the insurance adjuster and they will be patient and kind to you.