Useful Tips in Reviewing Water Damage Claims

July 11, 2014

In a recent interview with Claims Journal, William “Bubba” Ryan, president and CEO of Atlanta-based Rytech, a water damage restoration company, discussed drying formulas and the growing trend in unnecessary demolition.

Drying formulas can provide a baseline to calculate the amount of equipment needed on a claim. Ryan said they can be helpful when vendors submit bills with vague descriptions on the amount of equipment used on a job.

According to the Rytech CEO, the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification, an American National Standards Institute, (check out www.iicrc.org for more detail) developed drying standards a number of years ago which have been adopted by insurers.

“Based on a square footage or cubic footage on a job, we can determine what is the proper amount of equipment to have on the job,” Ryan said.

In the past, some unscrupulous restoration companies would load jobs up with as much equipment as they could without insurers having the necessary checks and balances to verify the equipment needed and used on a drying job, he said.

“When the formulas came into play, it really cut back on a lot of the unnecessary scoping and overscoping of drying equipment on the jobs,” said Ryan.

A new trend seen by Ryan is unnecessary demolition which could be a response to insurers scrutinizing drying times and equipment.

Software and price guides allow for subjective pricing.

“It’s a very subjective thing. How much drywall do we take out? How much flooring do we remove? Do we take those cabinets out?” Ryan said. “Once those things are done, they’re gone.”

According to Ryan, for every dollar of demolition that takes place, it costs carriers eight to 10 dollars in reconstruction.

“The reconstruction of the unnecessary demolition is costing the insurance industry a lot of money,” Ryan said.

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