What To Do Next After Hurricane Damage

After a hurricane hits, you need to ensure you take the correct steps to ensure you have what is needed to deal with the insurance company.

First, fix anything required to prevent further damage. Tarping a roof, for example. But, document everything with photographs and receipts. 

Next, locate your homeowner’s policy.  You need to make a claim (in writing if possible).  If you don’t receive an acknowledgment from the insurance company within a week, follow-up.

The insurance company contracts with adjusters who are required to provide you a detailed itemized estimate of the damages. However, it is important to know, you do not have to accept their assessment.

If you have significant damage, you may want to hire a public adjuster.  Public adjusters typically charge a fee of 10% of the amount you receive.  We are happy to assist you with the process of engaging a public adjuster.

Tips: Hiring a contractor

  • When hiring a contractor, beware of out of town companies.  They may not be licensed.
  • To determine whether someone is licensed, you can go to myfloridalicense.com or call 850-487-1395.  You can also check with the county’s building department.
  • To find a contractor, ask for a referral from someone in the business.
  • Don’t sign an Assignment of Benefits of your insurance policy.  Reputable contractors won’t require it.  If you sign one, you lose all rights under your policy.
  • Get more than one quote for the work.
  • Don’t pay for the work in advance.
  • Get a written estimate or price.
  • If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

If you are in need of assistance or have questions about the next steps, contact our office and we will be glad to assist.

 

 

Stephen Moorhead is the Managing Partner of Moorhead Real Estate Law Group.

He is Board Certified in Real Estate Law by The Florida Bar’s Committee on Education and Legal Specialization and has extensive experience in real estate litigation, real estate development, and all aspects of complex commercial real estate transactions.

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