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Tips for reducing your time spent on insurance claims

By Sarah Barton, Terri Scheer Insurance Distribution Channel Manager

In the unfortunate circumstance that a landlord’s property is damaged or suffers from loss of rent, property managers are often tasked with submitting an insurance claim on behalf of the landlord.

Missing supporting documents are one of the most common causes of delays in processing claims and can prevent your landlord’s insurance company from being able to finalise or pay a claim.

This not only impacts the landlord directly but can also put strain on the property manager-landlord relationship. As a property manager, you want to achieve the best outcome for your landlord.

Here are some tips for property managers to help ensure claims are paid quickly and efficiently:

Entry and exit inspections

Entry and exit inspections need to be completed at the start and end of each tenancy. It is important to take plenty of photographs. Insurers will need to see ‘before and after’ evidence of any damage that has occurred. If the property is furnished ensure you include an inventory of contents.

Where damage has occurred, photograph each room where repair work is required and include detailed labelling. If the insurer can’t tell which rooms or damage they are looking at, this will cause delays while those details are confirmed.

If damage is extensive, call the insurer’s claims team as they may need to appoint a loss adjustor to meet you at the property.

Loss of rent

Terri Scheer’s most common landlord insurance claim is for loss of rent. Ensure breach or termination notices are served on time. Failing to issue or delay in issuing rent arrears notices to the tenant, or failing to issue or delay in pursuing a court or tribunal order for the eviction of the tenant, may result in the rent arrears claim being reduced or refused.

Routine inspection reports and regular maintenance

Insurers will want to see evidence that regular routine inspections have been carried out. Property managers should conduct at least one, and ideally two, routine inspections each year.

Ensure regular maintenance is carried out at the property. The policy may not provide cover if the landlord has not met their responsibility to provide a safe and well-maintained property.

Take steps to repair and re-let ASAP

If your landlord needs to make a claim, ensure actions are taken to minimise the loss.

You must demonstrate that steps have been taken to repair and re-let the property as soon as possible after the departure of the tenant.

If there is damage to the property, arrange for it to be cleaned, promptly obtain repair quotes for damage or contact the insurer to help with the repair process. Once repairs are complete arrange for the property to be advertised for reletting.

Proof of advertising will demonstrate to the insurer that you are making reasonable efforts to find new tenants.

Ensure you have included all supporting documents before submitting the claim

It can take longer to process a claim and impact the outcome if the supporting documentation is not attached.

To make the claims process as easy as possible refer to the claims section of the insurers website for a list of supporting documents to support your claim.


Disclaimer:

Insurance issued by AAI Limited ABN 48 005 297 807 AFSL 230859 trading as Vero Insurance. In arranging your insurance, Terri Scheer Insurance Pty Ltd ABN 76 070 874 798 AFSL 218585 acts under authority given to it by Vero Insurance. Read the Product Disclosure Statement before buying this insurance and consider whether it is right for you. Contact Terri Scheer on 1800 804 016 or visit our website at www.terrischeer.com.au for a copy.

The information contained in this article is intended to be of a general nature only. Terri Scheer does not accept any legal responsibility for any loss incurred as a result of reliance upon it. This article has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situation or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it. The Target Market Determination is also available.

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