April 25th, 2009 11:23 AM by Caren McCourt-Crane
The winds of West Texas continue to blow and it seems that the what came in "like a lion" is still here. With recent hail storms and a flurry of bad weather, we also have seen not only storm clouds "swoop in" but also the many repair providers "swoop in" for business in our area.
Some have "swooped in" for the kill and are gouging the heck out of local people asking stinky things like "let me see what insurance will cover and THEN we'll provide you what our estimate of what the repair will be". Or, one of the most common comments has been, "what's your deductible? Well, we want you to pay that to a check to us first because we know the repair will be over that. Youll just have to duke the rest our with your insurance company". It's sad for everyone involved when these opportunistic price gougers descend upon your city.
How do you prevent all this?
First, get with your insurance agent and ask them the best steps to handle this. If they won't see you or are too busy or just keep sending you to the national claims department, then it's time to go insurance agent shopping.
In speaking with our insurance agent, they recommended that for roofing issues it's best to seek a roofer out and get an estimate from them first - before connecting with an adjuster. Why? Because any home report is a "ding" against your insurance record. On the auto side, by all means (according to our agent) report each and every incident but for homes seek the advice of a roofer you know, like and trust. Which probably leaves out all the ones connecting with you from outside the area (hint: where's the phone call coming from on your caller ID).
Shop local. Because local still has to face you in the school parking lot, at church, at the grocery store, at the baseball game and at community events, they are more likely to "shoot straight" with you than anyone else.