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Xactimate: Are You Leaving Money On The Table?

The beauty of spring in Dayton, OH is often tempered by powerful storms, with heavy rains, strong winds and destructive hail. Through it all, your home protects you from the elements, but unfortunately your roof and building exteriors are susceptible to storm damage. Your roof might be the area of your home most vulnerable to damage in a storm, because so many things can impact it.

If you have experienced storm damage, it’s important to identify the damages quickly and determine if an Insurance Claim is necessary. If you decide to move forward with an Insurance Claim, make sure you hire a local Dayton, Ohio Insurance Restoration Contractor willing to help with the claims process, such as Helping Hands Restorations, LLC. The cost for repairs for your home is then determined through multiple negotiations between Helping Hands Restorations, LLC and the Insurance Company using a software called Xactimate.

What is Xactimate?

Xactimate is the software most commonly used by property adjusters to write their estimates, which are key components in the claims process. Xactimate is able to generate a cost-estimate to accurately depict what is required to return property to the pre-damage condition. It uses a sophisticated Sketch function to accurately determine all dimensions of your property’s interior and exterior. Xactimate then pulls pricing from local sources to accurately identify the amount and cost of each material required and the cost of labor to properly complete your project. More Insurance Companies require Xactimate be used by their property adjusters than any other software on the market.

Xactimate and Contractors

Contractors and builders generally do not use Xactimate – they base their cost estimates on sub-contractor bids and their general knowledge about the costs and time involved in a potential job. Many contractors/builders are unfamiliar with Xactimate. So if your contractor/builder is participating in settlement discussions with you and the Insurance Company’s Adjuster, he or she may be at a disadvantage. In addition, it is hard to compare an Xactimate estimate “apples to apples” with a more traditional contractor/builder estimate based on sub-bids.

This is where hiring Helping Hands Restorations, LLC can put you in an advantageous situation when dealing with your Insurance Adjuster. Unlike most Contractors in the Dayton, OH area, Helping Hands Restorations, LLC has over 15-years of experience using Xactimate to negotiate with Insurance Companies on our customer’s behalf. Because we use the same software, we are able to ensure that the fair market value in the Dayton, OH area reflects up-to-date market conditions. We are also able to ensure your Adjuster did not miss any necessary line items, and we compare our Xactimate estimate with the Insurance Adjuster’s Xactimate numbers to make sure they are sufficient to reimburse you for the actual cost of repairing and replacing the damage done to your home during the recent storm.

Beware of contractors who claim they can repair your roof for less than the insurance estimate.

When storms hit, your home and life can be turned upside down. You’re eager to get your home repaired, but be careful because some contractors aren’t really there to help. Xactimate pricing determines the fair market value for each line item. Fair market value insurance coverage is the price a willing buyer would have paid the seller in a free market. The pricing isn’t something the Contractor makes up; it is the same as what the insurance company utilizes. So, assuming the Adjuster agrees the damages are valid as an insurance claim and they agree with the components/process laid out in your Xactimate estimate for the repair process, the rate/charges are pretty much established. So, if you have a contractor offering to repair or replace your roof for less than the recoverable cash value for your claim, then most likely they are using inferior materials or performing shoddy work that is not up to code in order to make profit from the project. Leaving you with an improperly installed roof, a voided warranty because they didn’t install the necessary components and a headache down the road because their substandard work won’t hold up.

How do you know that you will have an accurate estimate for the repair or replacement of your roof or building exteriors?

Proper training is essential with Xactimate®, and if your adjuster and/or the contractor you have hired to create an Xactimate® estimate for your property does not know how to use the software properly, the result will probably be inaccurate. Generally, it will be on the low side.

Xactimate®’s pricing is often too low and too generic. The pricing is based on a median survey that does not always reflect up-to-date market conditions. Your insurance company is likely to turn an Xactimate® estimate into the settlement offer they make to you. That means that if the basis of that estimate was inadequate or incomplete, the resulting settlement offer will leave you short of what you need to return your property back to pre-damage condition.

The best approach to getting a fair claim settlement is for a property owner or their representative to get an independent estimate for repairing or replacing damaged or destroyed property from a reputable local construction professional who is trained in Xactimate. This will level the negotiation playing field for the property owner.

If your estimate cannot be compared apples to apples with an Xactimate® format, you will have a hard time convincing an insurance company to pay what you are owed. If you authorize Helping Hands Restorations, LLC to advocate on your behalf, we will make sure that you don’t leave money on the table. We will ensure that you receive the repairs or replacement that you are entitled to under your Insurance policy.

What is a Supplement?

Xactimate® estimates look impressive because they are well-organized, professional-looking and lengthy, but as stated above, they are often inaccurate. A computer cannot replace the knowledge of a local, experienced construction professional as to the materials, time and labor costs associated with a job. Not only that, but many times hidden damages are discovered once the repairs have begun. A competent contractor will supplement an Xactimate® estimate with items the Insurance Adjuster missed in the scope of work to be completed. The Insurance Company will not tell you the claims process, but Helping Hands Restorations, LLC will. Since we use Xactimate, it is easy for us to price any additional damages found during the repair process and justify any additional increase in cost to your Insurance Company. We can almost always work something out with the Insurance Adjuster. We will submit the supplement with documentation in the form of pictures, measurements and paperwork. The Insurance Company will review the supplement and upon approval, send a check for the additional monies needed to make the necessary repairs.

Don’t leave hundreds or even thousands of dollars on the table

Involving Helping Hands Restorations, LLC prevents you from getting stuck with a settlement that won’t cover your costs, or even worse, getting denied. With Helping Hands Restorations, LLC you pay no out-of-pocket expense other than your insurance deductible. We agree to accept what your Insurance Company will pay for the claim, including your deductible, and ensure the highest quality repair or replacement. You will also benefit from upgrades that we typically include in all of our projects, such as upgrading your roof from 3-tab shingles to architectural shingles, adding to your home’s curb appeal and property value, at no additional charge.

Hire Helping Hands Restorations, LLC today as your authorized contractor, and we will make sure that you are properly funded and that the best products in the industry are installed on your home. Call us today at (937) 215-8663 or schedule your Free Roof Inspection HERE.