The importance of photos during an insurance claim

When you have an insurance claim in your home, you will want to document everything that occurs. We have written prior articles that you may find helpful if you are looking for more information to help you understand what to expect during the mitigation (drying) and repairs process. You have heard the phrase, “A picture is worth a thousand words,” and this certainly applies when capturing the details of water or fire damage to your home. While the insurance company (“carrier”) likely will send out their own representatives, it is good practice to gather and keep your own documentation.

A few tips on taking photographs to document your insurance claim:

  • Four corners: Take a picture from each of the four corners of the affected room to document the broader conditions of your Tacoma home.

  • Top down: Take pictures from the ceiling, the walls, and down to the floor.

  • More is more: The greater the value of a damaged item or materials, the more pictures you should take. As Jon Isaacson notes in his book written for the property restoration industry, Be Intentional: Estimating, "Thou canst not take too many photos."

  • Zoom with caution: As you take close-up photos of your damages, be careful not to zoom in so close that the picture is intelligible and/or does not provide any context.

In combination with your photographs, keep notes of everyone you talk to, the nature of the conversation, and any agreements or decisions made regarding your homeowners insurance claim. It can be helpful to take a video as you walk through and verbal outline the damages to your home. Our team at All American Restoration Services (AARES) utilizes DocuSketch which is a resource that takes 360 degree photos that can be utilized to create a “tour” of your home.

Using 360 degree capture to assist you with insurance claims estimates and repairs:

  • The 360 degree tour that we are able to produce helps to document and capture the details in a manner that anyone with the private link can “walk through” the home even if they are remote.

  • Especially during COVID, this tool has helped to bring the structure to the adjuster so that the homeowner can shorten the time between an estimate and repairing their home.

  • This resource can help to expedite the estimating process by producing a detailed diagram that is optimized for Xactimate which is the common estimating platform for insurance claims.

  • 360 tours can be updated to include work in progress as well as capturing the finished product to produce side-by-side comparisons for before and after the insurance claim.

If you want to learn more about how AARES can assist you with your Pierce County insurance claims repairs, please check out our various resource pages. We pride ourselves in clarity, communication, and quality throughout the restoration process.

Bev C said, “I am so grateful for the outstanding work afforded me by All American Restoration Services. When I was faced with repairs from a water damage disaster. It's no wonder you were recommended by the water mitigation people.”

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