What To Do After Your Business Has Been Damaged By Fire
Fire damage can put your business out of commission for weeks or even months. If you plan to reopen the business, you must continue to meet your responsibilities while you make the necessary repairs. Duties can include rent, utilities, employee payrolls, and many other associated costs. Although insurance companies can help cover repair damages and keep your business afloat, many do not survive something as devastating as a fire. Taking the appropriate measures after a loss will assist your company in recouping losses and reopening. Find out how a business damaged by fire can continue to thrive.
Stow and Latch Supplies and Equipment that Survived
If you are able to re-enter the premises, you should secure and remove any salvageable equipment. Electronics such as computers, sensitive documentation, and any other equipment that could be damaged further by fire should be rescued if at all feasible, but you must document them precisely and notify the insurance of what you’ve removed and where you’re putting it. Your insurance company might examine damages, so don’t start restoring items until they say so.
Document the Damage
In the midst of the devastation from a fire, documentation might feel daunting. However, it is an essential step in proving your claim. Company costs incurred during the recovery phase should also be collected. Many of these costs are insurable, but you will need to keep track of them and record them in order to get reimbursed.
Tips on Documenting Inventory Losses
Here are four suggestions on how to document your inventory after a fire:
- Photograph damaged inventory, particularly that which you wish to rescue and salvage from the premises.
- If feasible, locate invoices or receipts for inventory that was damaged by the fire.
- Check your insurance policy to see if you’re entitled to full replacement cost or retail value for damaged goods.
- Before settling your insurance claim, establish an accurate valuation for damaged inventory.
Obtain Your Insurance Coverage
You’ll need to consult the information in your Declaration Pages and Long-Form Policy Booklet, or LFPB, as you prepare to file your insurance claim. This document summarizes your contract, like identified risks and categories of coverage, insured names, insured property address, and policy limits. The fine language in your Long-Form Policy Booklet explains the rules and limits that apply to your coverage.
Hire a Public Adjuster to Help with Disaster Insurance
When you work closely with a public adjuster on repairs and restoration, you’ll discover that the recovery process is much easier. Keep in mind that an independent adjuster is often a specialist for your insurer and will attempt to skew policy decisions in their favor. A public adjuster, on the other hand, will look out for your best interests and will only get paid when you do.
Stone Claims Group is a public adjuster firm with a wealth of experience serving the mid-Atlantic, South, and West Coast areas. Our company looks at your case from a personable lens to get you the best recovery possible. Many clients who work with us have turned thousand-dollar claims into million-dollar appraisals. We would be glad to assist you in getting the most out of your incident-affected properties. For free guidance on how to proceed with your claim, give us a call.