Posted on: 21 August 2018
Although your home insurance coverage extends to vandalism damages, the manner in which you handle a vandalism incident and claim is important. It determines how soon your claim is settled and how much settlement you receive, among other things. Here are a few tips on how to handle a vandalism claim.
File a Police Report
You need to call the police as soon as you realize that your home has been vandalized. In fact, you should do this before even touching anything in the house. Here are three main reasons why calling the police first is the right thing to do:
- It gives the police the best opportunity to catch the criminal
- It confirms to the insurer that your home was actually vandalized
- The police report will contain evidence of your loss and damage, such as broken windows
Therefore, you need to call the police even if you suspect that they won't be able to catch the vandals.
Minimize the Damage – But Don't Repair
Once the police have documented the vandalism, you should take the necessary steps to minimize further damage. Note that minimizing the damage is not the same as repairing it, and you shouldn't do the latter. For example, if the vandals broke your windows, you should board them up to prevent interior water damage, but you shouldn't replace them until the insurance adjuster comes along. Minimizing the damage is useful because the insurer won't pay for further damage caused by your negligence or failure to mitigate the risks.
Don't Wait Too Long To File Your Claim
You shouldn't wait too long to make an official claim. First, such a delay increases the risk of further damage that insurance might not cover. Not only that, but the sooner you file your claim, the faster it will be settled and the sooner your home will be fixed. Don't forget to get your repair quotes from authorized contractors so that you don't clash with the adjuster when it comes to the valuation of the damage.
Lastly, it pays to document everything from the moment you realize the damage to the moment it is repaired. For example, even before taking measures to mitigate the damage, you should take pictures of the damage to give the adjuster a clear picture of the scope of the issue. If the damage involved more than the structure of the house, gather the receipts or any relevant documentation of the affected items.
Contact a company like Oliveira Insurance Agency today to learn more.Share