Texas leads the nation in hail damage insurance claims, according to an analysis released by the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB). The analysis looked at claims data from Jan. 1, 2016 through Dec. 31, 2018.

According to the analysis, there were almost 2.9 million hail loss claims filed within the study period. Of those, 811,000 were filed by property owners in Texas, making it the top state for claims of that type. In addition, San Antonio and Plano placed first and fifth on the list of top five cities for hail loss claims, with 75,000 and 43,000 claims, respectively. Meanwhile, Colorado was the second leading state for hail claims, with 395,000. Nebraska, Missouri and Kansas rounded out the top five, with 163,000, 153,000 and 146,000 claims, respectively.

The NICB also examined the most common problems homeowners encounter when trying to get their property repaired after hail damage. They found that unethical contractors often tried to take advantage of homeowners by offering a quick fix and then doing poor work or simply taking off with the insurance money. To avoid such scams, the organization recommends that policyholders check with their insurance company before signing any repair contracts with a company. They also suggest that homeowners get multiple estimates, don't sign any contracts on the spot, get all promises in writing, request and validate references, and request the contractor's driver's license and vehicle plate numbers.

Homeowners whose property sustains storm, hail, wind or rain damage may have difficulty getting a full settlement payment from their insurance company. When this happens, it might be helpful to contact an attorney who deals with insurance claims for advice. Counsel could review the case and do everything possible to ensure a homeowner receives the payout he or she is entitled to.

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