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Friday, 13 December 2019
Agent Resource Center
Agent Resource Center

Ouch, That Hurts: The 5 Most Common Property Damage Types and Their Costs

Written by Posted On Monday, 18 November 2019 00:54

According to the latest reports, property damage accounts for a whopping 98.1 percent of insurance claims among homeowners and renters.

Are you a victim of damage to your home? Whether it's from a storm, theft, vandalism, or anything in between, you probably have questions about how much it'll cost to make the necessary repairs.

Explained below are five of the most common types of property damage, along with a rough estimate of what they'll cost to fix. 

  1. Wind and Hail Damage

Some of the most common property damage claims that homeowners file have to do with wind and hail damage. Wind and hail can damage your roof and cause water damage inside of your home, or it can knock down trees or break off limbs and lead to severe structural damage.

Whether it's the result of a hail storm, a hurricane, or a tornado, there's a good chance this type of damage will get covered in part by your homeowners' insurance policy. On average, though, it costs for repairs start around $2,000.

  1. Water Damage 

Water damage from other sources is common as well. It could be the result of flooding, for example, or a burst pipe.

Water damage happens often during the winter when pipes freeze and then burst. It can occur at any time of the year, though.

That's why it's important to regularly monitor the plumbing in your house and address signs of water damage right away.

The average water damage claim cost is roughly $10,000.

  1. Theft

Some people don't realize that theft is considered a type of damage. It is, though, and it's often covered, at least to an extent, by your insurance policy.

Many homeowners' insurance policies cover your personal property up to a certain amount (often a few hundred to a few thousand dollars). This means that you can receive a payout for up to that amount to help recoup the items that were stolen.

  1. Fire and Lightning Damage 

Fire and lightning damage is not as common as some of the other types of damage on this list. It can still happen, though, and the claims are often quite steep. In fact, the average fire damage claim clocks in at around $37,000

Fire damage is often covered under homeowners' insurance, especially fires caused by acts of nature like lightning. It's still a good idea to check your coverage, though, so you're not left 100 percent responsible for the damages in the event that one occurs.

  1. Vandalism

Vandalism is also a form of property damage that your homeowners' or renters' insurance policy may cover.

There are several different examples of this type of damage, from someone smashing your windows to spraypainting the side of your house.

The average cost of vandalism damage is around $3,000. It's important to check your policy with a careful eye so you know exactly which types of vandalism are and aren't covered.

Tips for Handling Property Damage

If you've been a victim of any of these types of damage, you might be wondering what the appropriate process is for handling them. Follow these guidelines, especially if you're dealing with an insurance company, to ensure you get the issue taken care of as soon as possible:

Contact Your Insurance Provider

Keep in mind that there is a time limit for property damage claims. As soon as you notice that your house has sustained some kind of damage, it's important to reach out to your insurance provider and find out what they can do.

The longer you wait, the harder it might be for you to have the damage covered. You also run the risk of damaging your home further, especially in situations where there's water damage or structural issues.

Secure the Property

Be sure to secure the property to prevent additional damage from occurring. You and your family may need to evacuate the house and find somewhere else to stay until a repair crew can come.

This is another reason why calling your insurance provider is so important. They can help to cover the costs of lodging, in some cases, and get to work addressing the issue right away so you can get back into your house as soon as possible.

Consider Hiring a Professional

You may get a fairer payout from your insurance company if you hire an independent professional to estimate the damages. Working with a public adjuster, for example, can help you ensure you're not getting less of a payout than you deserve.

Remember, the insurance company will try to save themselves as much money as possible. They might overlook or undervalue the cost of something to try and avoid having to give you a higher payout.

Don't Start Making Repairs

Don't start making repairs until your claim has been processed. You and your insurance providers need to discuss and agree upon the repairs beforehand.

If you start fixing things early, that could affect your payout and the status of your claim. Once you've secured the area, leave things alone until all the details have been hammered out.

Don't Throw Anything Out

Don't throw away anything related to the accident. This could include estimates from repair crews, documents detailing the damage, or anything from your home (furniture, personal belongings, etc.) that sustained damage.

Even if they're beyond repair, hang onto them until your insurance claim has been processed. They may be needed to help estimate the extent of the damage and the value of your payout.

Address Your Property Damage Today

Are you dealing with property damage to your home?

If so, hopefully, this article has given you more insight into what it'll cost to repair common types of damage, as well as how you should proceed to get them handled as soon as possible.

Do you want to learn more about dealing with damage or filing insurance claims? If so, visit the Consumer Advice section of our site today for some additional insights.

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