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If your plumbing system is cast iron pipe, your home may be a disaster waiting to happen. Most homes built prior to 1975 used cast iron pipe plumbing, which was the standard up until that time.  Unfortunately, these pipes are subject to the build up of corrosion and rust on the inside of the pipes.  If these iron pipes fail, leaks and other water damage may cause thousands of dollars of damage to your home.…
Now that Hurricane Michael has caused devastation through Panama City, Mexico Beach, Tallahassee, and the Florida panhandle, property owners are now facing the damage left behind by the storm.  Although homeowners may be overwhelmed by having to now navigate a hurricane insurance claim, there are – at least – 9 things that property owners should NOT do after a hurricane property damage loss. 1.   Do NOT return to your home until it is safe to…
After a loss, an insurance company will often mandate that the policyholder complete and sign a form called a Proof of Loss regarding the damages claimed by the policyholder. A Proof of Loss is a one page form (possibly with attachments) that is usually provided to the policyholder by the insurance company. The Proof of Loss form requests specific information from the policyholder regarding the date and time the loss occurred, type of loss claimed,…
Although the terms Actual Cash Value and Replacement Cost Value are not commonly used outside of property insurance disputes, they can have a substantial effect on the amount of money you receive from your insurance company after a loss. After your insurance company determines that your insurance policy provides coverage for your loss, the insurance company has various ways to calculate the value it will pay you for your lost or damaged property.  There are…
It seems like every April 1st, the National Flood Insurance Program informs us that it is raising the premium rates for flood insurance.  (Feel free to insert any April Fools jokes here.) As of April 1, 2018, the average flood insurance premium rose 8 percent, with some property owners seeing increases of up to 25 percent.  Despite what you might initially think, these increases are not the result of Hurricane Irma, but are part of an ongoing…
Roof damage is the most common type of hurricane insurance claim we see after a hurricane, wind storm or hail event.  Wind from hurricanes and tropical storms can cause substantial roof damage – whether just a few loose shingles or the total destruction of the entire roof structure.  Even worse, any opening in your roof can cause water to enter your home and devastate your belongings.  Hail can also cause severe damage and greatly reduce…
After a hurricane, storm or other disaster, you hoped that your property insurance company would honor your claim and pay for your damages.  After all, you purchased homeowners insurance with the expectation that, if a catastrophic loss ever occurred, your insurance company would provide for the repair of your property back to its pre-loss condition.  Unfortunately, as many homeowners are now experiencing after Hurricane Irma, property insurance companies do not always live up to policyholders’…
Now that Hurricane Irma has marched through the entire length of Florida, those affected by the storm must now face perhaps an even more stressful event – the pursuit of a property damage claim against their homeowners insurance company.  Although it may take several weeks for property owners to fully realize the damage caused to their property, they need to move quickly with a claim against their property insurance company.          …
When dealing with a hurricane or tropical storm, surviving the weather event is often only the beginning of the battle.  The insurance company’s constant nit-picking of your claimed losses can drive you bonkers – especially while you are trying to put the rest of your life back together.  Then, just when you think you may have worked out a reasonable resolution of your claim, the insurance representative says, “Oh, and by the way, we are…
Even as the internet is full of Hurricane Harvey damage pictures, another storm is quickly approaching Florida from the eastern Atlantic.  Tropical Storm Irma – soon to be Hurricane Irma – is projected to be a major storm and may make landfall along Florida’s coastline.  The time is now to stop looking at flood pictures in Texas and realize that we could be in the same situation – or worse – if a major storm…