Property Claims, Dealing with the Damage

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    Navigating Property Claims: Dealing with the Damage

    When it comes to property claims, preserving the scene and waiting for the insurance adjuster to arrive may not always be the best option. Learn why taking immediate action to prevent further damage and make temporary repairs is crucial, and how M&G can assist you with your insurance claim process.


    In TV drama shows like CSI and Bones, we’ll often see the police secure a perimeter around a crime scene to seal everything off until the investigators arrive to assess the situation and collect clues. Preserving a scene after an incident can be important for a lot of reasons.

    When it comes to a claim on your property though, you don’t need to treat it like a crime scene. Rather than leaving everything “as is” until the adjuster arrives, it’s much better – and usually required by your policy – to act immediately in effort to prevent further damage. 

    In practical terms, this means stopping whatever it is that’s causing the damage, and then making whatever temporary repairs are needed to prevent additional damage from occurring. For example: 

    • If you have a broken pipe, it’s okay to cut a hole in the drywall and make the repairs to the pipe. You also should call a disaster restoration contractor to start drying out any property that has been soaked by the water; household cooling fans, even the big ones, aren’t usually large or powerful enough to dry a saturated area quickly.
    • If one of your windows breaks, have the window boarded up so that rain (or thieves) can’t get into your building.
    • If severe damage to the building raises questions about its stability, it may be necessary to hire a trained professional to safely remove any undamaged property from the area. 

    Be sure to document and record everything you’re doing as you go along. Take pictures of the damage before, during, and after you start taking things apart. If you can, set damaged items neatly aside, so that they’re available for the company’s inspection. Keep receipts for all your expenses, so that they can be included for consideration under your claim. 

    With all that said, you shouldn’t undertake any major repairs until your insurance company has had the opportunity to review the damage and confirm coverage under your policy. While trying to decide how far to go in making temporary repairs, a good rule of thumb is to ask yourself, “What would I do to minimize my damages if I didn’t have insurance to help?” 

    At M&G, you’re never alone in your claim. Reach out to our office at any time to speak with our advocates to help with your claim at any step of the process.

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