So you called your insurance to file a claim and they suggested you get some bids?
The insurance company definitely wants to see what’s damaged before they talk about costs. Perhaps your agent just wants to make sure the damage is significant enough to warrant notifying the claims department, so that you don’t end up with a small or zero-dollar claim. In fact, many local agents trust us to go out and make an initial assessment of your damage before starting the claim to make sure a claim is a good idea. But during those inspections, it’s very early to talk price.
Most insurance companies first want to inspect your damage to determine if there is a loss. Then, they assess whether your policy with them covers some or all of each line item of the repair. Lastly they try to estimate the cost of repairing that loss, and how much of the cost of each item can be covered under your policy.
Our estimate for any work doesn’t mean anything until an adjuster determines there is damage (from a storm event) that needs to be repaired, and that they are going to cover the expense. Then we can step in and tell them what needs to be done to complete that repair, and how much it will cost.
If we give an estimate first, then we are basically interpreting your insurance coverage, and that can be a slippery legal slope for all of us. Usually in order to expedite the review and approval process we will work alongside your desk adjuster to send photos, descriptions, and identify materials. And then they cross-reference that with your policy coverages to determine which items they will cover repair of and determine the scope of work. Then they work with us to agree on a final price for that scope of work. It’s best for you and us if we wait until they make a preliminary recommendation before talking price. So first, let’s get a look at what all got damaged and discuss what it will take to fix it. Then we can decide together if getting your insurance company involved is the right move.