First of all, as mold insurance professional vendor, one of the top questions we hear from customers, “does my insurance cover mold?” The short answer is, MAYBE! Every policy and every insurance company are different. It has become more common over recent years for insurance companies to omit certain coverage like mold removal and basement foundation leaks. Some insurance companies now require additional coverage for basements or water damage. So, the first place to start is with your insurance agent. Because they need to verify that you have the proper coverage for your home and risks. It is becoming the industry standard for insurance coverage to NOT included water damage from foundation issues. Therefore, not covering many basement mold removal projects. As a rule of thumb, it never hurts to ask. So we recommend you contacting your insurance agent to verify coverage. If you file a claim. You can expect an adjuster to come out rather quickly. So we recommend making yourself aware of a few points to protect your interests:CALL NOW TO SPEAK WITH A MOLD PRO
6 Ways to Protect Your Interest During a Mold Insurance Claim
1. Review Your Policy
- Review your written policy BEFORE contacting your insurance agent
- Specifically, look for coverage for water damage & foundation issues
- Look for specific coverage regarding mold insurance
2. Communicate in Writing
- We recommend email as much as possible.
- If you have a phone conversation:
- Keep a pen and paper handy and make notes of all points of discussion during the phone call
- Follow up with an email in writing that state, “per our phone conversation today…” and include all the items to discussed
- Include all parties in the email thread: agent, adjuster, mold contractor, etc.
- Text messages are also a great form of quick written communication
- If your claim is approved, request a written statement of approval prior to commencing work.
3. Lots of Pictures
- Take pictures prior to contractors beginning work.
- Better yet, have your mold company provide pictures throughout the extent of the project.
- Because they will see things in the containment barrier during removal that you will not!
- Take pictures yourself during and after the project is completed
4. Choose Your Own Contractor
- Often insurance companies recommend their own contractors. Be careful with these recommendations.
- Because insurance companies and their agents often have back-end deals. Where they receive kickbacks from the mold insurance contractors for the referral. Thereby, putting their own interests ahead of yours.
- Most often this means dealing with large nationwide franchises that do not value you as a customer. Because their real customer is the insurance company, NOT you!
- Remember, it is common for the larger franchise companies to use shortcuts to keep their costs down.
- Also, it can reduce the billing charges to the insurance company by NOT doing a thorough job.
- These practices can result in possible long-term effects on your health and your property.
- INSIST on using a contractor that YOU feel comfortable with.
- Check the contractor’s certifications and experience
- Also, ensure that the project manager on your job is actually certified, trained and experienced themselves.
- Often mold companies certify the company, but not the individuals overseeing the work.
- Check the contractor’s reviews thru third party sites like Google, Facebook, Zaarly, LinkedIn, Angie’s List & Home Advisor
- Look at the contractor’s history of service, time in business and reputation in the community.
- Verify the contractor provides pollution insurance in addition to general liability. This is vitally important coverage for mold removal.
5. Obtain Written Copy of Claim
- The itemized claim will most often be provided the form of a “Xactimate bid”.
- Xactimate is a third party company that provides standard billing rates for the insurance industry.
- Your claim should include everything that the insurance company is stating that they will cover
- Provide a copy of this bid to your mold contractor.
- Because the scope of damage and thereby work may be larger than the adjuster normally projected.
- This frequently occurs due to the hidden nature of the mold.
6. Obtain Written Documentation from the Mold Insurance Contractor
- Original estimate
- Terms of service agreement
- Pictures that were taken by the contractor throughout the job
- Final invoice
- Paid invoice
- Certificate of Warranty