Nothing is more disappointing than going to your insurance company to make a claim only to find out that you don’t have coverage for the loss that has just occurred. What can you do to help avoid this horrible feeling?
One of the best ways to prepare for a claim, is to know what your policy does and does not cover well in advance of anything going wrong. That way there are no surprises when it comes time to submit a claim to your insurance company. It’s always a good idea to do what you can to prevent a loss to your property, that’s just responsible ownership. Knowing the types of losses that aren’t covered allows you to take extra steps to avoid such losses when possible, and also to prepare to deal with those losses in the situations where you can’t prevent them.
For example, for the vast majority of property owners, it is impossible to obtain coverage for over-land flooding. Knowing this in advance allows a homeowner to be extra diligent in ensuring their property has proper drainage to avoid having water enter their property. In situations where drainage can’t be arranged, have a plan to deal with flooding, such as storing property in your basement on shelves, keeping spare pumps and fans on hand just in case.
Make sure you understand your coverage when you set your policy up, and each year as you renew your policy
When you buy an insurance policy whether for your home, vehicle, or business make sure you know what’s covered before you sign on the dotted line. A great question to ask is “what coverages (if any) are available that this policy doesn’t provide me with”. You don’t always have to buy every coverage option out there, but knowing what is available allows you to make the buying decisions that are best for you.
Another great way to start to understand your policy is to ask your insurance provider to go over a few examples with you of losses that are covered, and some examples of losses that are not covered. Ask questions about specific types of losses that you’re particularly concerned about. This may mean talking about a special item you own, or a specific kind of loss you’re worried about (ie: theft)
Your insurance broker should be happy to answer any questions you have about your coverage, after all we don’t want our customers to be disappointed in the product we are selling, especially during a high stress situation where property damage is involved.