Are public insurance adjusters worth it?
Getting a public adjuster for insurance claim assistance can be a major decision. On the one hand, your public adjuster will be able to share their copious knowledge with you while assisting with every step of the claims process. On the other, hiring a public adjuster means sharing a percentage of your eventual homeowner’s insurance settlement. It all comes down to a cost-benefit analysis, then, so the question becomes: what are the costs, and what are the benefits?
Firstly, know that public adjusters provide more value than what can just be expressed in a dollar amount. Not only can they help you increase the size of your claim — and sometimes avoid having your claim denied altogether — but they also provide their assistance and expertise throughout the claims process. Dealing with your insurance company on your own can be stressful and intimidating. Insurers rely on your inexperience and your willingness to “get it over with” in order to reduce the value of your claim. Your public adjuster will work directly with you, and they can handle most (or in some cases nearly all) of the interactions with insurers.
Read on to learn why so many people rely on a public adjuster to assist them when they are in need of a payout to repair their property damage. You can also call Pinnacle Claims Services today to schedule a free damages inspection, insurance review, and consultation where we can answer all your questions. Call 877-70-CLAIM or contact us online to schedule your free case review now.
What Is a Public Adjuster?
A public adjuster is one of the three main types of insurance adjusters who may become involved with your homeowner’s insurance claim. An adjuster’s job is to come to the site of the property damage to perform an inspection. They will then help apply a formula to determine the costs of repairing the damage and the final amount that could be paid out through an insurance settlement.
The three types of insurance adjusters include:
- Company insurance adjusters — Work directly for the insurance company.
- Independent adjusters — Work on a contract basis for insurers
- Public adjusters — Work directly for the claimant/policyholder and assist them in interacting with insurers throughout the claim
Like other adjusters, public adjusters are certified repair and insurance experts. Unlike company adjusters and so-called “independent” adjusters, a public adjuster is not being paid by the insurance company for their services. Instead, their payment comes from a portion of the benefits granted in a settlement to the claimant. This arrangement incentivizes the public adjuster to maximize the size of claims and obtain every benefit possible for the homeowner. Other adjusters, though, are encouraged by the insurance company to restrict the size of the claim as much as possible.
How Much Does a Public Adjuster Cost?
The fee charged by your public adjuster depends on the services being rendered and the size of your expected insurance payout. Typically, these fees are set as a percentage of the final claim settlement value.
Public adjusters’ fees are set up-front according to a contract. All public adjuster fees are negotiable up to this point, and they may vary based on the size of the claim, the complexity of the adjustment process, and other factors like the current volume of overall claims.
In Florida, public adjuster fees are capped to 20% of the claim’s final settlement value. This cap is set to 10% for damage directly related to events declared as a state of emergency by the governor of Florida, up to one year from the date of the event.
Many adjuster organizations also allow claimants to sign a contingency agreement stating that if a settlement is not reached, there is no fee. These types of agreements reduce the risk placed upon the claimant while further incentivizing the adjuster to do everything they can to obtain a payout for all damages.
Do Public Adjusters Get Me More Money From My Insurance Policy?
Every bit of a public adjuster’s service is intended to get you more money from your policy while making the claims process easier to handle. However, there is no way to guarantee that the value of your claim will be increased by bringing an adjuster on board. There are simply too many factors involved to provide such a guarantee, and insurance companies in particular can be unpredictable when it comes to their willingness to provide the expected benefits.
With that said, know that public adjusters in Florida, on average, have been shown to increase the size of the claim’s final settlement value between five and seven times in the wake of disasters like Hurricane Katrina and Wilma.
Another factor to consider is that public adjusters can help you reduce your own mental and emotional burden during difficult times in your life when you have sustained property damage. Public adjusters help you simplify the claims process and reduce the amount of time and effort you have to put in towards communicating with the insurance company.
What’s the Best Way to Find Public Adjusters Near Me?
Public adjusters can be found through typical methods of finding services in your area, including TV/radio/print advertisements and internet searches. Some public adjusters may also directly solicit homeowners in disaster-stricken areas to offer their assistance with any homeowner’s insurance claims.
The best way to find a public adjuster that is right for you, though, is through recommendations made via client testimonials and word-of-mouth referrals. Personal experience provides the best evidence of an adjuster that is not only trustworthy but who also provides excellent service and measurable results.
You can also vet the quality of a public adjuster’s service by asking about their years of experience, examples of successfully closed claims, and a list of any complaints made against them to the state or agencies like the Better Business Bureau. Public adjuster companies should be willing to be completely transparent about their level of expertise and their reputation with claimants like you.
Call Pinnacle Claim Services for Assistance After You Have Suffered Property Damage
Having a damaged home or other property is extremely disruptive to your life. A 2015 study from Japan found that individuals in highly damaged areas had a much higher degree of psychological distress compared to those with moderate or no damage.
Hiring a public adjuster can help provide you with peace of mind as well as the freedom to put your focus on the things that matter most: being there for your family and putting your life back together.
With experience handling thousands of claims, our adjusters are ready and able to serve you in your time of need. See how we can help, and what advantages we can offer, during your free initial case review. We’ll inspect your damages, look at your policy, and tell you how you can start putting your life back in order. Schedule your free inspection and case evaluation now when you call 877-70-CLAIM or contact us online.