Most insurance companies writing new homeowners insurance policies subscribe to a centralized claim reporting agency.
It very likely your previous homeowners insurance company reported your claims history and it is listed on a Homeowners insurance CLUE report.
So before you turn in your next claim you should consider the consequence on your future policy premium.
“That is why I pay for insurance. They owe me when I have damage”
Homeowners policies are not maintenance policies.
They are not home warranty policies.
Homeowners insurance policies are designed to cover you for major financial events that result in a claim that you really can’t pay out of your pocket or you can’t financially recover from.
Some people struggle with the above statement.
“I pay too much for insurance here to not make a claim. I want some of my premium back”
Something to consider if you recently purchased a home insurance policy.
The insurance company can cancel your policy in the first three years.
If you make small claims that are just above your deductible you risk
Premium increase at renewal
Cancellation of your policy
Difficulty finding a new home insurance policy with an active claim history
How long do claims stay on my claim history report?
Usually 3-5 years depending on the type of claim.
Fire and Water (not flood) claims usually are 5 years.
How does an Insurance Company know about my claim history?
Insurance companies keep track of every homeowners claim history through a Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange or CLUE report.
Insurance companies report your claim to the exchange so all insurance companies can share the information for underwriting purposes.
What if I get a homeowners insurance policy with a company that doesn’t use a CLUE report and don’t tell them about my claim?
You may be able to get away with this one, but if you make a claim and the insurance company investigates your claim history and discovers a claim not reported on the application, YOUR CLAIM COULD BE DENIED.
Most insurance applications will have this statement
“Material Misrepresentation on this insurance application could result in denial of future claim payments”
What’s this about?
Next time your have damage to your house consider
- The total value of the loss (get an estimate)
- Amount of payment you will receive after your deductible
- Can I afford to pay this out of pocket?
- Claim covered or just wear and tear? (maintenance issue)
It is important you have an advisor or advocate on your side before you call the insurance company.
An independent insurance agent works for you because you are their customer.
Agency owners are local small business owners.
They hire employees in your community.
They usually are involved in supporting the local schools or events.
Before your next claim, call your agent and discuss the claim with them.
It is possible you may need to handle the claim out of your pocket to maintain a competitive rate for the future renewals.
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