Thursday, June 05, 2008

I Hate Hail

Hail damage on car: $800+. Deductible: $1000. Getting your car repaired: No.

Hail damage on roof (but only on the metal tubes) $400+. Deductible: $1000. Getting your metal tubes repaired: No.

Hail damage on kitchen window: $160. Window coverage: $100. Getting your window replaced: Yes with the $100 check they wrote me. Does anyone know where I can get a new window for under $100?

Hail damage to tree in front yard: no clue. Insurance coverage: None. Getting the big ol' broken branch out of the tree: No idea. Any suggestions? No, a ladder won't reach it.

As if the hail storm weren't stressful enough with the sound and the trees falling and thinking I'd lost Zorba in the storm, crying and not sleeping all night, none of the damage to my "stuff" was "bad enough" to do anything except lose me money. I guess I should be thankful there wasn't more damage done. Except that the damage done isn't getting fixed cause I'm not paying for it all by myself. Which means my car and my house and my life are getting more ghetto by the minute.



texasinafrica said...

Re: suggestions for the tree:

Joe Courage.

Royce said...

Have faith --- there may be more hope than you think. Don't take the insurance adjuster's word for the damage on your home. You need your "pro" to evaluate the damage and confront their "pro"(the adjuster).

Find a General Contractor (GC) that can perform all the repairs on your home and has experience in dealing with hail claims. Tell them you are interested in doing a "contingency agreement" with them. Let them do their own damage appraisal and deal directly with the insurance carrier. You maintain control of the money from the insurance company and pay the contractor in a fair and equitable manner. 1/3 beginning, 1/3 half completion, 1/3 upon completion is standard.
Ask the contractor to trade out the value of your deductible for advertising and small repairs you can make yourself.

Chances are there is more damage than discovered.

My book on the subject "Claim Impact" will be off the presses this summer. If you are interested in more information about the publication, send an email to the address listed below with "tell me more" in the subject line.

Good Luck

Royce Barry
Your car is another story.

jenA said...

wow, you scored a pro's comment on your blog! I agree with not going by the claims adjuster's estimates right off the bat.

Check with a dent removal specialist first. Are the dents really big, or really small? Are they deep or shallow? Sometimes the shallow ones can be popped out with a suction device from the auto parts store.

As for the tree, never take down a broken branch yourself, even if it's low enough to reach. If it isn't hanging over the house or drive, let it fall by itself, then have someone with a chainsaw cut it up for you. Otherwise, hire professional tree trimmers. They may come surfing down your street after a storm, but refuse to pay more than $100 for removal of one big branch.

You can and should try to replace the kitchen window yourself. If it's a standard size, it's likely there's a replacement hanging around some surplus building materials store in Austin (check for a Habitat ReStore, too). The home improvement store can even walk you through the process. If it's just a single pane, look up some glass replacement place. They can cut a single piece for less than $100.

In the future, your car and home deductible should never be more than $1000. Few average repairs come to that or more. Chances are, if it's at least $1000 it's probably more than that.

I recommend you change them both; at your age, the difference in your premium shouldn't be that much. also, take the time to shop around for better policies. There's no minimum requirement for how long you hang on to a policy.

FOURTH AND LAST - look into a home warranty service. I have Old Republic, which is not the greatest but it covers repairs on some of the greatest home culprits - water heater, a/c, appliances, for a $60 service fee and a $400 annual premium.

jenA said...

sorry, meant to say for the deductibles -- never more than $500.