How to recover depreciation value on homeowners insurance claims.

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Nov 9, 2012

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Insurance Question from Dublin, OH

Asked on 11/09/2012

How to recover depreciation value on homeowners insurance claims. we had a large leak in our kitchen this summer, which ended up flooding our basement. We received an estimate & they deducted the depreciated value of the carpet from the cash we received. We replaced the carpet, but now they won't give us the depreciation value back for it. why is that? the cost exceeded the carpet value, but the rest of the repairs did not because we changed the scope of what we wanted done(and we did a lot of the work ourselves). Why won't they return the rest of the money on the carpet since that is what was depreciated?

Answer given on November 10, 2012

If you had a homeowner loss and the insurance company depreciated a portion of the claim, the company will usually make an additional payment once the repairs have been completed.However, the insurance company wil also look at the entire claim. If you changed the scope of repairs, the insurance company will only pay for replacement in kind. Any upgrade is your responsibility. If you presented the final total amount of the repairs, including the replacement cost of the carpeting, then the insurance company will look at the total amount of the repairs. If they have already paid the value of the total, they will not pay any further amount. However, the adjuster should explain this to you. Talk to the adjuster and ask them to explain the final settlement amount and why they are not willing to make an adjustment for the carpeting.

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