Is it a big mistake to file a small claim?
You know that sinking feeling you get when something goes wrong with your house?
Whether it’s a stolen bike or a burst pipe, your first reaction may be to call us to file a claim. In reality, filing a claim “just to be on the safe side” could cost you — in more ways than one.
But won’t your insurance just deny claims that are too small? Not necessarily. Find out how to decide which claims to file and which to pay for out of pocket:
Should you file a claim?
Some types of events, think fire or theft, are too serious and expensive to tackle on your own. Anything causing significant damage that would be impossible to pay for, even with your emergency fund, is probably a good claim candidate.
Here are a few common scenarios and how you might want to deal with them:
You recently filed a claim. Think long and hard before submitting another. Most underwriters assume one claim every 10 years is average. Filing more could be cause for a rate increase.
The claim is related to home maintenance. Nope — upkeep falls squarely on you. If it’s revealed that you’ve let your maintenance schedule lapse on things like plumbing or HVAC systems, your homeowners policy could even be canceled.
The cost to repair the damage is well over your deductible. Yes, report away. Say a tornado takes out the whole back half of your house. In this case, filing a claim is the only way to make your home liveable again.
When it comes down to it, you have homeowners insurance for a reason. If you need it, use it.
Just be smart about when you do and you could save yourself a lot of stress and a good chunk of money.
Have questions about whether or not to file a claim? Reach out anytime.