Monday, August 15, 2011

Silver Linings

Good morning!

Remember a few weeks ago when I had that horrible week?      This post

My upstairs toilet clogged and overflowed, ruining my upstairs carpet and doing extensive damage to the downstairs ceiling and floor. It hasn't been easy.

We deal with car insurance claims all the time. Customers call their insurance company and they send an appraiser out right away. The appraiser gives us a total cost of repairs and the company issues a check. New to the world of home insurance claims, I thought the process was the same. Apparently, not.

I called the 24-hour claim hotline early Monday morning on the 18th of July. The very nice man told me he was sorry for our misfortune and assured me a clean-up crew would call before coming to the house to clean up the water and assess any moisture problems. John, Amanda, and I sopped and vacuumed up most of the water and we all went to work, confident the cleaning crew would do a more thorough job. They never called. They never came.

I called the hotline again on Wednesday mid-morning. I was told a response could take anywhere from 24-48 hours. I told the nice man that it had already been 50 hours (!!!) I was transferred to our adjuster who would handle the claim. I left three different phone numbers on her voicemail.

I called the adjuster again on Thursday afternoon (4-1/2 days since the loss) and actually got a live person. She told me to get an estimate from a licensed contractor and fax it over to her. Apparently, all the contractors on her list were 2-1/2 hours away from our town.

Our contractor came out on Monday morning (a week since the loss) and made up a conservative estimate. After all, we only wanted to replace the damaged things in our home. We faxed the estimate to our adjuster on Tuesday morning.

On Friday, we called to find out the status of our claim but we were unable to reach her. We called again on Monday morning (2 weeks since the loss.) She told us she took a few days off and just returned to her office. She also said she needed to speak to the contractor because she had a few questions on pricing. We told the contractor to call her. He didn't reach her until Wednesday.

We called the adjuster again on Friday. She informed us that she didn't like the estimate (believe it, is more like it) we sent her and she was sending another contractor who works with the insurance company. (For the life of me, I don't know why she didn't do that in the first place.)

On Monday morning (3 weeks since the loss) the new contractor came out to the house. Not only did he find our estimate to be within reason, he also found more damage, which doubled the claim. Needless to say, I will be getting new cabinets, counter tops and flooring. I'm ecstatic! I've never been fond of the previous owner's (my mother-in-law's) taste in kitchen decor but didn't have the funds to even think about changing anything.

So, where am I going with all of this? I'm sure you all know the saying, "Every dark cloud has a silver lining."
Well, sometimes those clouds also spew rainbows.