Today I opened a claim with USAA due to some very wicked winter weather here in the North East forming ice dams and causing water damage, to my home (this is unusual for our part of the country). I opened my claim via phone with a representative, then came here to look up some info on the process. I was surprised to see so very many unhappy USAA customers and am worried that my claim may go south like so many others have. I am posting this right at the start, with an open mind, in the interest of documenting the entire process, so that my experience - regardless of positive or negative - can be documented. Hopefully this will help others either in navigating the claim process, or in deciding whether their relationship with USAA needs to end.
I am a third generation USAA member with many of my family in the armed services - my brothers, aunt and uncles, cousins, a sister, father, step-father and mother are all members. I have been with them myself for over 20 years, so I am hoping that they handle this claim in a responsible manner. Fingers crossed!
As of today, I have had two conversations with USAA reps - the first I called to report the claim. He asked me to inspect the house to be sure that I was reporting all the visable damage which includes water running under wood floors in two bedrooms, a ceiling leak in our family room and icicles and an ice puddle in my garage and unfinished mud room. This rep walked me through the claim opening. I currently have roofers that specialize in ice dam removal (and are covered by the proper insurance for the activity) removing the ice that has been causing the damage. USAA will cover removal of the offending ice dams only (those actually causing current damage) after my deductible. I was very upset about my brand new wood floors, but he assured me that the exact same flooring would replace what we had lost.
This first rep told me the next step is water remediation. He told me they do have a team they use but their team is backed up scheduling wise, so I should call a professional in my area on my own. I found such a company and they will be coming today or tomorrow to assess the damage. This first rep was very nice, and reminded me that personal property would not be covered so we should move any items that might be damaged, out of the area, to safety.
I have taken video and pictures of all the damage. I then called USAA back to be sure I understood how the claim process works - that these numerous areas of damage are covered under one claim that I will need to pay one deductble. This rep confirmed this and also told me that I can pay the deductible as part of any service. Since my claim will likely involve not only the ice dam removal and water mitigation but also replacement of the floors, I can either pay part of the ice dam removal, part of the water mitigation or during the later floor replacement.
I did let the water mitigation company know who my insurance company was when on the phone, but they did not comment on any past dealings.
The guys on the roof are doing a fabulous job! I am amazed at what they have accomplished so far! I hope I end up amazed with USAA as well.
Thank you for the reply! I cannot imagine losing so much so fast - though it does help put things into perspective for us. . . I hope things have returned to close to normal for you since the fire.
So far so good over here . . . my Adjuster called last night just to introduce himself and to see if he could come by on Monday so I am glad that things seems to be moving along in the right direction quickly. We also had a water mitigation company here yesterday who has dealt with USAA claims in the past. So far, I am very happy with the locally owned group we called. I do not know who USAA would have sent, but I am glad their team was busy because I trust this company - they have a great reputation and are local - not a franchise.
So far it looks like window damage, sheetrock replacement, insulation replacement, some seriously professional drying out techniques, mold prevention treatment and eventual replacement of my brand new wood floors will be needed. I cannot believe the extent of the damage. If anybody has any ice dams on their homes I highly reccommend getting them removed or at least have channels cut into them NOW before there is damage. Though our roofing company did a fabulous job attacking the sources of our water damage, we spent all day today taking care of the additional ice and snow on our roof to prevent any further issues. It was a lot of work! Prevention is much easier.
I am so sorry for the damage to your home. I am very glad to hear things are running smoothly so far, and that you have been happy with your communication with USAA. Please continue to keep us updated and aware of any issues, as I can help you get them properly escalated.
Thank you for your long time membership. It is our privilege and honor to serve you and your family.
Thank you again for posting!
A total loss. I cannot even imagine. I hope you and your family are recovering and would like to know if there is anything I can do to help you get the issues you speak of taken care of? Did you hear back from anyone on Friday? Please keep me posted and let me know if I can assist you in any way. Thank you for posting.
Additional contact today on my Ice Dam claim. It turns out my on-the-ground adjuster (who is a different person from my USAA adjuster - just a pointer so people do not get confused - would be nice if they used different terms!) actually meant he would call me this past Monnday - not actually come to see the damages, (though it was I who ended up calling him). He is not available until the following Monday, but we do now have an appointment.
My water mitigation company is ready to start helping us resolve all the water issues and damage as early as this week, so I have asked them to speak directly to my USAA adjuster - I do not want to fall into the telephone game of "they said" and feel it's best that they communiccate directly. Basically, I am pushing all parties to communicate openly and am making sure that everyone knows all companies involved and exactly what has been done to this point. I am hoping this will help speed things along as I would like to get the water mitigation/restoration commpany going since they are ready. Though I have already been told (by both a USAA phone rep I had called before being assigned an adjuster and my on-the-ground adjuster) that repairs can start but just to document everything (receipts, photos, reports, etc) I still want these two to talk directly. Water M/R company can tell USAA adjuster the plans and get the OK to move ahead with just one phone call rather than a dozen back and forth exchanges with me in the middle.
I would have been happier had the USAA adjuster suggested this, rather than me feeling like I am doing his job, but it will get done at least. I'm sure he has my claim on a hold status, waiting for the on-the-ground adjuster to move foward before he actually does anything on it, but with wet walls, floors, studs and insulation (which by-the-way loses it's R value once wet) I do wish the action was more proactive and I do not think it wise to let the damage sit another week to allow for the growth of mold or futher deterioration of building materials.
So far it seems this will move fwd, as long as I am pushing it from behind.