If you have suffered property damage to your deck, it is good to know that your homeowner’s policy might cover it. The first thing you need to do is to read your homeowners policy carefully to make sure the deck is covered and if any exclusions apply. Once you have determined that your homeowner’s policy would cover the damage, here are a few tricks to be successful in recovering the costs.
1. Determine What Is Covered
When looking under your homeowner’s policy, you need to determine whether it is under the “dwellings” portion of your policy or in the “other structures” portion. If your deck is attached to your house, it may be covered under the “dwellings” portion as long as it is attached permanently. If it is a standalone structure, such as a deck around a pool, then it will probably be covered under the “other structures” portion. You will need to check these sections thoroughly to understand the limits of the coverage. They will usually not cover any damage that is due to wear or a lack of upkeep.
2. Document the Damage with Photos
The first thing you need to do is to document the damage with photos. These photos should be taken the day the damage occurs, and you should make sure to have the time and date stamp enabled on your camera. Do not start cleaning up the damage until you have the photos. You want to make sure you show how bad the damage is and document every potential issue you see. Some contractors will use your photos to give an estimate.
3. Start Your Claim As Soon As Possible
The next step is to start your claim as quickly as possible. The longer you wait, the longer it will take to get your deck repaired. Also, if there has been a major storm or natural disaster in your area, you want to make sure that you get in line as quickly as possible.
4. Find a Contractor Who is Experienced
Some contractors are experienced in dealing with insurance companies and will be willing to take over the process once you have started the claim and paid your deductibles. This takes the hassle out of the process for you, and they are used to dealing with it. They are familiar with the process, and this means that their bids are less likely to be rejected.
Royal Deck is a leading deck contractor in the Chicago area. We can help if your deck needs to be repaired from storm damage, or if you would like to put in a new one. We provide reliable consultation, design, and installation of decks for homeowners in the Chicago area and suburbs. Contact us, and we can get started on the process as soon as possible.