Remember these steps for filing homeowners insurance claims

Even though homeowners hope that disaster will never strike, they also know that they should prepare for the worst. But even after taking that important step toward protection, the average homeowner might not be familiar with the process for filing a homeowners insurance claim. Having a firm understanding of this process can help a homeowner avoid any unnecessary headaches when dealing with the insurance company.

For some people in Washington, the first step is to file a police report. This is only if the damage was caused by something like vandalism or theft, and homeowners should be sure to contact the insurance company next. If that is not the case and the damage was caused by something else, like a fire, the first step is to notify the insurance company. While policies can differ, many require that damage be reported within a specific time frame.

Addressing urgent repairs might be the next step. Although it might be tempting to wait until the insurance company has paid out, making emergency repairs can curtail future damage and protect residents. Homeowners should be sure to maintain detailed records for reimbursement.

Documenting the process is not limited to repairs. When it comes to submitting a claim, the more information the better. This includes things like pictures and videos of damage, records of phone calls and names of people at the insurance company.

The insurance companies do not make it easy to submit claims. This can discourage some Washington homeowners and make them think about giving up on the process altogether. Abandoning a homeowners insurance claim is not the best solution though, so those who are unsure of what to do next might find it more helpful to speak with an experienced attorney.

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