Selecting a Public Adjuster, Part 2
Outline the details of your policy and claim
Is the level of your current insurance coverage appropriate for the property?
Looking forward, are there any changes to the policy that need to be made?
What are the details of my policy?
How much coverage is allocated for each affected piece of my claim?
What is the fee structure when enlisting the help of a public adjuster? (Keep in mind, in most cases, the benefit far exceeds the cost)
Does the fee amount apply to the total claim or particular segments? (ex. loss of revenue or strictly structural)
Set communication expectations
How and when will I receive updates on my claim? As they happen or on a weekly and monthly basis?
What mode of communications easiest and most efficient for both parties? (email, phone, office meeting…)
Will there be one point of contact or multiple points of contact? If applicable, who are these people and what parts of the claim will they be the contact for?
Will I be notified each time a decision is made or are there decisions that do not need my approval? What are some examples of these?
Ensure the public adjuster understands your motivations
Convey your rationale for selecting to proceed with a public adjuster. What are your “hot buttons”?
Time and convenience? Is your primary impetus of enlisting the help of a public adjuster to streamline the process without taking much of your time and effort to have the loss remediated? In many cases, homeowners do not have the bandwidth to deal with such a loss while maintaining their already busy lifestyle. There are many things that can be damaged that need to be tended to, outside of tangible damage.
Need to recover additional money to remediate the loss? This is most often the driving force to contact a public adjuster. In many cases, the homeowner is left with a damaged home and insufficient funds to make repairs, essentially forcing them to identify a solution to the problem, which is often a public adjuster.
Leave it to the experts? Many select a public adjuster because major loss is a rare event for most homeowners. They may have never gone through the process and/or have little understanding of what is involved. Additionally, a public adjuster can recommend a course of action at each step of the process. Another thing to remember is that a public adjuster holds negotiating power that a homeowner may not have. Remember, they do this for a living. The experts can most often arrive at a better result, even after fees for their services.
Take your time
If time permits, carefully review the credentials and results of your public adjusters and ensure you are comfortable with the relationship. You will be working with this public adjuster for a period of time so it is important to make sure that it is a good fit for both parties.