By Ginger Allen

NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Even before a crew can remove all the heavy limbs from Bruce Ballard’s house in Kennedale, insurance adjusters are on site taking stock of the damage. Ballard hopes his insurance provider will reimburse him quickly.

“Whether the insurance covers it or not, you’ve got to get it fixed cause you’ve got to keep living.” Ballard said.

Chad Young with Standard Insurance, which advertises on CBS, says he understands why homeowners want to get back to normal quickly.

“You’re paying us a premium so we can put you back whole,” Young said and adds the process goes much more smoothly when homeowners know their agent’s name, number and have their policy in hand immediately after a disaster.

It can be hard for a disaster victim to recall what items are missing or damaged immediately after a crisis.

“Lancaster is an example,” said Young, “homes were flattened. That is a traumatic experience, and having someone come in and tell me what was in your bedroom, what was in your guest room, you’re not going to remember.”

Young advises his customers to make an inventory list, take still pictures or video of their belongings and keep your records in a safe deposit box.

Houston Harris, from Swingle Collins and Associates, says check your current policy every year just to make sure it doesn’t leave you at risk. The amount it takes to replace your property will increase over time.

“We always see that consumers tend to put their insurance policies in a filing cabinet and don’t dust it off.” Harris said.

If your home is damaged, Young says your first reimbursement check may not be the only one you will get.

Bill Ballard says he and his wife reviewed their policy often and he feels confident his insurer will take care of everything.

“We’re adequately covered.” Ballard said. “That’s one of the things you do in life, set aside a nickel and get yourself prepared.”

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