|7951 E. Maplewood Avenue, Suite 130
Greenwood Village, Colorado 80111
Serving Colorado, New Mexico, Utah & Wyoming
Contact: Carole Walker, Executive Director
303-790-0216 or toll free 800-355-9524
Colorado's Destructive Wildfire & Severe Weather Season is Exacting a High Price: June Storms Add Up to More than $320 Million in Estimated Insured Damage to Cars & Homes.
June 26, 2012 – Colorado's 2012 wildfire season has already reached devastating historic levels, and new insurance claim estimates from the hail, wind and flooding that wreaked havoc on June 6th from South Denver-Metro down to Colorado Springs and then dished out a second round on June 7th in Northern Colorado and the Eastern Plains make it the state's 4th most costly catastrophe with an estimated 69,842 auto and property claims totaling $321.1 million. Insurance companies track both storms as one event so damage estimates include 33,459 auto claims and 36,383 property claims. The lion's share of the damage was to roofs, along with hail battered and flooded vehicles.
When adjusted for inflation in today's dollars, July 11, 1990, still ranks the highest with an estimated $1.08 billion in insured damage. July 20, 2009, is second on the list with a hailstorm hitting the North Denver-Metro area and costing an estimated $804.8 million (most expensive in actual claims paid). Third is the June 2009 tornado and hail that pounded Aurora and the South-Metro and Fort Collins. http://www.rmiia.org/Catastrophes_and_Statistics/Hail.asp
"Colorado is already experiencing its most destructive wildfire season and Mother Nature doesn't appear to be letting up any time soon," says Carole Walker, Executive Director of the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association. "While wildfire can exact a more devastating personal toll, this is a stark reminder that hail is still historically the state's most costly insured catastrophe due to the widespread damage to cars and property."
Tips for Selecting a Reputable Contractor
Don't become a victim of disaster fraud. After a headline capturing fire or natural disaster, professionals often go from door-to-door in damaged neighborhoods, offering clean up or repair services. Many of these business people are reputable. Others are not. The dishonest ones may pocket payment without completing the job or use inferior materials and perform shoddy work not up to code.
NOTE: Colorado has a new law that took effect earlier this month that helps protect consumers. It requires roofing contractors to show identification, insurance and scope of work. In addition, it allows homeowners to rescind a contract within 72 hours if they change their mind or don't have insurance coverage and prohibits the waiver of an insurance deductible.
- Get more than one estimate. Don't be pushed into signing a contract right away.
- Get everything in writing. Cost, work to be done, materials, time schedule, guarantees, payment schedule and other expectations should be detailed.
- Demand references and check them out.
- Ask to see the salesperson's driver's license and write down the license number and license plate number.
- Ask for proof that the contractor is bonded, carries liability insurance, and covers his/her workers with workers compensation insurance.
- The contractor's business card should have a verifiable street address and office phone number.
- Never sign a contract with blanks; unacceptable terms can be added later.
- Never pay a contractor in full or sign a completion certificate until the work is finished. Request a lien waiver indicating the contractor has paid its subcontractors and suppliers.
- Insurance coverage may be rendered void if intentional misrepresentation by a policyholder is discovered.
- If you believe you have been approached by an unlicensed contractor or adjuster, or have been encouraged to fabricate an insurance claim, contact your insurance company or call the National Insurance Crime Bureau Hotline at 1-800-TEL-NICB (1-800-835-6422).
Log on to www.rmiia.org for more information.
Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association is a non-profit consumer information organization. Affiliated with the Insurance Information Institute, RMIIA has been serving consumers and the media since 1952.