Partial Losses: Wind driven rain
Insurance adjusters are infamous for “not seeing” less visible damage and using “cosmetic” techniques to avoid the higher costs of necessary repairs or replacements. Shortcuts intended to rid odor, contamination or corrosion from damaged property may ultimately prove unsatisfactory; in some cases, replacement may be the only option.
If you notice additional damage, or if damage returns (even if it’s a year later), call your insurance company to finish or continue repairs or replacement.
In the case of partial damage, the “Line of Sight Rule” is especially applicable.
If you find that left over (and sometimes invisible) debris or traces of mildew is making you sick even after repairs have been made, it is not repaired to its pre-loss condition.
Here are some guidelines for partial loss wind damages:
Consider the following to make sure your house is repaired to pre-loss condition:
Wind is turbulent and circular; it pulls and sucks with incredible pressure. Drive down the freeway at 65 mph and put your hand out the window. Try it at 90 mph and you’ll really notice the difference. Expect the unexpected. Watch for hidden damage:
- In a big storm the roof might lift and damage the entire house. The house has been in a collision with large winds which might cause more damage than what you physically see. Adjusters will rarely see more than what you see.
- Walls can be lifted off the slab. If a wall is open, look to see if anchor bolts have been lifted and/or loosened, or if the wood beneath the nut is compressed.
- Foundation damage is possible due to different circumstances during a storm including pressure when the roof and walls were lifted. Have it checked.
- At night, turn lights off and roll a flashlight flat against the surface to see if there is any twisting or deformation in either direction, or nails popping.
- Sheetrock is degraded by water and loses its fire-resistant qualities.
The Line of Sight rule often comes into play after a partial loss. Check out Chapter 5 of our eBook for more information.
More detail on Partial Losses can be found in Chapter 2 of our free eBook “A Survivor’s Guide to Insurance”.