Insurance Introduction

I called our insurance company shortly after the fire to get the ball rolling. After navigating the automated voice recognition telephone tree I finally landed with the person who introduced herself as our primary claim adjuster. She described the overall scenario to me, and let me know the names of the other Allstate adjusters we’d be working with. There are three in total:

  • Adjuster for the Dwelling
  • Adjuster for Contents
  • Adjuster for Additional Expenses

Our policy includes additional expenses outside what we pay regularly to live. So while we’re still paying our mortgage, they’ll cover the cost to rent a place for up to twelve months.

Our dwelling is covered for a specific amount, which is the amount the house appraised at in 2005. I’ve heard tale of another type of coverage, which covers the rebuild cost, whatever that may be, but our house was never eligible for that since it’s over 100 years old.

Unfortunately the amount our dwelling is insured for is no where close to the cost to build a house from scratch in Juneau, where $/sq ft costs are very high.

Allstate has been pretty good so far, although we’ve found they are not forthcoming about what they owe us. This was expected, although after you’ve watched your house and all precious belongings turn into ash, it’s a cold slap in the face to have to deal with such an unfeeling bureaucracy. Even the individuals we’re working with, we can tell, are desensitized from dealing with it so often. More than a few times we found our adjuster’s lighthearted attitudes inappropriate. Advice to insurance adjusters: when you’re talking to a family that just lost their home and just found out they’re under insured, don’t tell them about the all inclusive policy you have on your own home and the vacation you’re about to take so you can build a new deck.

So after meeting with our dwelling adjuster, we’re encouraged we’ll get the maximum our policy offers us, but thoroughly depressed about that amount being so much lower than what it will actually cost to rebuild the pink house.

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