Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Waiting, Waiting, Waiting

It was two weeks ago today that fire gutted our next door neighbor's home and singed our own property as well. Since then, crews have cleaned up the debris next door, torn down the garage and are in the process of tearing off the charred remains of the roof.

Meanwhile, next door at our home, zip. The melted vinyl siding still clings precariously to the side of our garage and our outdoor shed which also partially melted stands pretty much the same as it did the morning after.

Dealing with insurance companies can be fun, can't it?

This is partly my fault as we're not exactly in a big hurry. We have a carpenter on-site already replacing our patio roof, a project that was in the works long before the fire occurred. I thought a second crew working literally just a few feet away might interfere.

But I'm also playing tag with my insurance adjustor, my insurance agent and their preferred contractor.

The morning after the fire I contacted my insurance agent who got in contact with an insurance adjustor. He was at our house the same afternoon as the fire. He gave us an estimate of repairs the next day. So far, so good.

He suggested a contractor who came out the next day. She basically agreed with the estimate, except that she thought our shrubbery next to our garage was also irreparably harmed. The adjustor hadn't included that, though he included a few hundred to restore our scorched lawn. The contractor said she would do a revised estimate that included replacing the shrubbery.

I got back with the insurance adjustor with that information. He asked if we were going to retain the services of that contractor. I said we would decide once we received her estimate. I was supposed to get that in an e-mail the next day.

But I didn't. Nor the next day or the next. She finally called, saying that she had computer problems. We waited for her estimate all last week. She finally faxed it to my wife's work fax, after my wife had left work on Friday. So we didn't see it till yesterday.

When I looked at the estimate, I discovered that she had omitted any costs of repairing our outdoor shed. *sigh* But she did remember our scorched shrubbery. In the meantime, our on-site carpenter replacing our patio roof gave us an estimate of repairing our siding too.

So I e-mailed our insurance adjustor, asking if we can go ahead and have the construction outfit already on site repair the siding too. And seeing if he can do a revised estimate of damages to include the scorched shrubbery.

And now we're back to waiting, waiting, waiting . . .


Blogger Lynilu said...

My favorite pass time .... waiting, waiting, waiting. Good luck. You may have to add a couple more waitings.

7:38 PM  
Blogger Jan said...

A friend of mine had a garage fire and said to his agent who was dragging his feet, "If I'd known it would be this much trouble, i wouldn't have set the fire."

Insurance people have to sense of humor. They sent two investigators.

8:16 PM  
Blogger TechnoBabe said...

Life is a work in progress isn't it. Lots of waiting. The little things take so much work you end up wanting to just get it done and pay for it out of pocket. Maybe that is part of the strategy of insurance companies?
I hope you get the correct estimate and get the work completed soon.

6:26 AM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

LYNILU--I used to say half my life was spent waiting on either the wife or the kids. Now it's the insurance guy.

JAN--Whoa, good advice. And I'm just the kind of smart aleck to make a comment like that.

TECHNOBABE--Yeah, that's what I'm worried about, we're going to get stuck with the bill now.

9:19 AM  
Blogger Carine said...

I hear you on the waiting Dave, but we didn't have to deal w/ insurance adjusters THIS TIME. The good news is, you'll love it when its done. At least that what I kept telling myself...

10:52 AM  
Blogger Nankin said...

Dave, I've been out of contatc. Sorry to hear about the neighbor's fire and your damage. That's the pits.

1:02 PM  
Blogger Merle said...

Hi Dave ~~ I hope your waiting isn't too long now. They take their time these insurance guys. Thanks for your comments and my fried tomatoes were red. I have a few green ones left from the tomato plants, now gone,
so may try some fried green ones.
I did see a piece in the paper about the balloon or the under-carriage that didn't take off. Happily no one was hurt.
Your poor son when he was 3 years old being attacked by a goose and
bitten. Does he remember? I hope
not. I patted a white cockatoo at
a wildlife sanctuary and it bit my small finger to the bone, but I was a couple of years older.
Take care, my friend, Regards, Merle.

7:03 AM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

CARINE--Same here. We hope we'll love our new look when it's all finished. But it will take a while.

NANKIN--I just hope we don't ever have to go through this again.

MERLE--He remembered the goose attack for a couple years. But he says he doesn't remember it now. Birds can be mean, can't they.

11:17 AM  
Anonymous Enforcer said...

I hate dealing with contractor's, that's why I do most of my own work. Hey, maybe I could give you an estimate.

5:48 PM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

ENFORCER--Yeah, I can guess at your estimate. Probably would include a fair amount for beer.

8:53 AM  
Blogger Lucy Stern said...

I hate dealing with Insurance companies..... Good luck getting your work done, Dave...

We have a house in our neighborhood that caught fire a couple of months ago, and it still looks like it did 10 minutes after the fire was put out.. Nothing has been done on that house, yet!!!

2:59 AM  
Blogger LZ Blogger said...

Big Dave we had a simlar situation only with 100 MPH straight-line wind and hail damage... the only thing that was quick about dealing with the insurance company was the appraiser's arrival. After that it took over six months before the work actually got started. Some of the folks in my neighborhood still had not gotten money from their company even a year later. So... regarding your question "Dealing with insurance companies can be fun, can't it?" My answer is NO! But I hope it all works out for you better than it did for me and my neighbors! ~ jb///

4:21 AM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

LUCY--We had an odd experience with the burnt out home just last night. I heard an annoying beeping noise just as I was trying to sleep. It appeared to be coming from the fire-gutted home next door. So we called police to check it out. Turns out that it was a smoke alarm going off. Better late than never, I guess.

LZ--Oh, oh. That's depressing. I was expecting a check any day now. You're right though--that insurance adjustor was on site in a hurry. And I was expecting the money just as quickly.

9:13 AM  
Blogger Lee said...

I'm waiting to hear back from the electrician about whether they can replace two elements on my stove....waiting...waiting....waiting! I've rung them twice (they said when I took the elements to them that they would ring me back within an hour or two......their hours must be longer than mine which are 60 minutes)! So I'm waiting....waiting....waiting.

1:58 PM  

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