What should residents do to file a claim? Pat Breslin, a spokesman for New Jersey Manufacturers answered a few questions…
Look at what happened and what the cause was. Property insurance covers damage caused by winds and fires, but not floods. Residents living in flood zones are required to have separate flood policies provided by the federal government, too. Residents outside floor zones can voluntarily buy flood policies.
A tree falls through your window soaking the furniture? That would be covered by property insurance.
A flooded basement? That would be covered by flood insurance.
Take photos. This is the best way to document the damage.
Mitigate the damage. Insurers will appreciate-and pay for- steps you take to prevent further damage to the home. Document those steps.
Call your insurance company. Many companies have set up toll free numbers on their websites. New Jersey Manufacturers, for one, added 70 employees on Sunday to field calls. Most of the calls were about downed trees, although the company expects more calls about flooding damage as the streams and rivers rise.
Wait for the insurance carrier to inspect before calling a contractor.