People whose homes are damaged by fire may face a challenging time dealing with their insurance companies. The results of major wildfires, such as the Camp Fire, have changed the way that many insurers do business. Homeowners devastated by fires have faced massive losses, from their homes themselves to the landscapes that once surrounded them. After a claim, however, or a significant fire in the area, homeowners are likely to face substantially increased premiums. For people living near the Camp Fire, fire insurance costs have doubled in the year after the disaster.
Insurance companies have claimed that they were shocked by the results of major wildfires. The response has included massive rate hikes, and many homeowners in areas hit by fires say that their homes have become unaffordable as a result. Insurance rates can vary from address to address even in one community, so new buyers in an area may want to pay special attention to the costs of fire insurance when opting to purchase a home. In some states, public fire insurance plans may also be options, but these are often even more expensive than private plans.
However, some homeowners have encountered additional challenges when seeking a payout after years of paying premiums for their fire insurance policies. Insurance companies may challenge their expenses and estimates. Their claims may face lengthy delays, even while their homes remain uninhabitable. Some people may see their claims denied or sharply devalued, with insurance companies claiming that, for some reason, they are not responsible for covering the costs of damage associated with a fire.
Homeowners who have suffered a devastating fire may be further shocked to find themselves facing delays and denials for their fire insurance claims. An experienced attorney may help to hold the insurance company accountable and pursue the compensation that affected homeowners deserve.