House fire - £210,000 buildings, contents and alternative accommodation claim
Mrs Wood was alone on a Saturday night in her house in Gloucestershire. She had just gone to bed when she heard a roaring noise: she looked out of the window and saw smoke pouring from the roof. She immediately called the fire brigade who arrived quickly but too late to stop the fire spreading. The roof and loft space were completely destroyed, the first floor was severely damaged, and the rest of the house affected badly by water from fire hoses.
Mrs Wood immediately tried to contact the insurers but had difficulty getting hold of anyone. In the meantime, Mr Wood made his way back from his business trip to the Far East and was able to be with his wife on the Monday. They both appreciated they faced a very difficult time, particularly as Mr Wood spent so much time abroad. They talked to Morgan Clark and realised that using a loss assessor “would be a good thing – and it proved to be so”.
Morgan Clark took over the claim and handled everything on behalf of the couple. They immediately brought in contractors to carry out emergency building works including scaffolding and a temporary roof, and introduced specialist surveyors and building contractors to carry out the re-instatement of the house. They advised Mr & Mrs Wood on which contents could be salvaged, and guided them on finding suitable alternative accommodation.
Mrs Wood soon saw at first hand the value of using a loss assessor: when she and her husband met with the insurer’s loss adjuster, they were accused of delaying reporting the fire. Luckily Morgan Clark was at that meeting: “We realised then how useful it was to have someone acting as a buffer between us and the loss adjuster. It meant we didn’t have to keep going through things with people who were not sympathetic.”
Morgan Clark liaised with all parties involved in the claim, including the loss adjusters and insurers, and saw it through to completion. The total claim amounted to £145,000 for re-instating the house, £55,000 for contents and £10,000 for alternative accommodation.
The re-instatement was a significant project which included demolishing and rebuilding the roof plus major work on the rest of the property including new windows, services, kitchen, built-in wardrobes, plastering and decorating. While some contents were salvaged, many had to be replaced. Morgan Clark oversaw everything for Mr & Mrs Wood, including preparing and chasing interim payments to keep the project moving as quickly as possible.
According to Mrs Wood, “Having a loss assessor working for you means you have someone on your side. Loss adjusters are not there for you: they are there for the insurance company; and they seem to work on your vulnerabilities. Morgan Clark fight your corner for you and give you good advice: having someone professional rooting for you and arguing your case is invaluable. When you’re going through such a difficult time, it gives you such a boost.”