Update by user Oct 16, 2017
Finally paid for the claim
Original review posted by user Aug 18, 2017
On July 11th, 2017 we noticed that our hardwood floor in our kitchen and hall had erupted due to a water leak at the refrigerator. The continuous hardwood floor consists of about 1000SF.
On July 14th, 2017 I submitted a claim to Safeco to have an adjuster sent to evaluate the damage. On July 18th a contract adjuster arrived to inspect and evaluate the damages. On the day your adjuster arrived, (Travis Cummings) he told me that he could not work outside the scope of work that Safeco set for him. That scope only allowed Travis to file information that supported patching the damaged area with new wood and resurfacing the entire continuous 1000 SF of floor.
That Scope was set by Safeco prior to Travis visiting the claim site. When Travis re-evaluated the claim on his second site visit, he reassured me he would lose his job if he supported anything outside the Safeco Scope of Work Limitations only offer to patch, and refinish my 1000 SF of hardwood flooring. As the claim progressed, your in house desk adjuster, Cole Tate indicated a similar story that he can only support Patch and Refinish of my floor and no other options were available per his team leaders to me or him. Tate stated that since only 30% of the floor was severely damaged, that I do not qualify for total floor replacement.
Safeco has now closed the claim. I assume Safecos position is if they only pay 2/3 of the claim, it is a windfall for the corporation. It is and always has been my position that I should be compensated for like for like which means I am entitled to get the same type and quality of flooring that I had prior to the water leak or something of equivalent value. And, I should be compensated for the full costs associated with achieving that.
As I have discussed with Tate on several occasions, a patched and refinished floor is a lesser floor than I have today. This violates the terms of our Insurance Policy. I have told Tate that I have discussed the Patch and Refinish estimate with at least seven floor retailers and installers (experts). All of those professionals supported my claim that a patched and refinished floor has less of a warranty (3 years opposed to 25 years), The finish on the floor will not be as durable, the entire look of the floor will change due to the sanding, (currently my floor has 5 color variations designed into the floor.
Sanding and refinishing will yield a single color bowling alley look) and the floor over time will become noisy due to the extreme pressures exerted by the expansion of the wet floor boards during the damage period. Safeco claims is not working with me nor offering any alternative other than the cheapest Safeco option which is to patch and refinish. Safeco has stated that my estimates to replace the floor are too expensive and that I am not entitled to a total floor replacement. To date Safeco has not offered any rebuttal estimates or allowance proposals to replace the entire floor.
Safeco has pushed me into a corner for the past 30 days. I have to complete the repairs to this floor but I refuse to follow the guidelines of Safeco Claims adjusters over the flooring professionals I have conversed with. My wife has tripped and fallen three times now on this torn up flooring. I can no longer risk personal injury to my family.
I am going forward with replacing the entire floor. I will be sending Safeco the receipts from the flooring supplier and the installer upon completion of the floor. I have had 30 days to price shop flooring and installers and it looks as if my project estimate for floor replacement should be around $12000. On August 17, 2017, I had a lengthy phone call with Team Leader Jason Calvin (spelling).
I tried to explain to Jason my concerns with a patched and refinished floor but Jason was focused on winning this debate. Jason consistently stated that all Safeco is responsible for is to repair my floor and I was NOT entitled to an entire floor replacement. I tried to negotiate with Jason to reach some type of mutual agreement, but Jason was very stubborn that I accept the Patch and Refinish as there were no other options from him. Jason further told me that I cannot begin repairs until 60 days or more have expired allowing floor drying time.
I tried to explain to Jason that the total costs of his proposal would be nearly the same cost to replace the floor. Again Jason arrogantly stated that all Safeco is responsible for is to repair my floor and I was NOT entitled to an entire floor replacement. I also tried to explain the hardships his proposal would bestow on my wife and I. According to Jason we need to hold off on any repairs for at least another 30 days.
That means another month living in a home that is dangerous with tripping hazards and large wooden splinters. I told Jason My wife had tripped and fallen on the floor 2-3 times and he smugly said oh come on now and laughed. I told Jason the existing unsafe conditions may require us to vacate the home for the next 30 days plus the 6-7 days of his project. He said the house was still livable and Safeco would not pay for us to vacate.
I tried to pass on information that I have obtained from flooring professionals whom stated the overall quality of a refinished floor is less than a factory finished floor. Jason then became combative telling me these people just want to sell floors. He would not even consider anything I told him might be correct. Suddenly Jason was a wood flooring expert!
I then tried to discuss the fact our existing floor has a 25 year warranty and that warranty was voided upon refinishing. Jason laughed and said Safeco is not obligated to provide me with a warranty. Jason would NOT consider any alternative proposals that I suggested such as converting this claim to a floor replacement . He would not consider any estimates that I would submit for anything other than Patch and Refinish.
Jason continued his rant that Safeco was only obligated to repair the damaged area. I told Jason that a total replacement can be the solution to a repair. I tried to explain to Jason that my wife has recently had Pulmonary Embolisms and that the polyurethane smells would irritate and swell her lungs. No comment or concerns from Jason.
I tried to explain to Jason that my estimates indicate I could replace the floor for nearly the same cost of refinish with the additional refinish costs of 6-7 days lodging for my wife and I, 7-8 days lodging for our two dogs, Packing and removal of the majority of our furniture and collectables, climate controlled storage of that furniture, delivery and unpacking of our furniture and collectables. House cleaning and dust removal, Plus all these personal inconveniences would be negated if we were to stay home, replace the floor and move the furniture from one side of the house to the other as the floor replacement went on. Jason restated that all Safeco is responsible for is to repair my floor and I was NOT entitled to an entire floor replacement. If you compare this replacement cost against the total proposed claim cost that would have been submitted for the sanded and resurfaced floor, you will see only a small difference between your unacceptable proposal costs and updated total floor replacement cost.
I have once again attached the unpaid remainder of the proposed cost estimate if I were to sand and refinish. Jason was much more concerned about winning the debate in lieu of attempting to work together with me to find an acceptable solution for both of us. Life is a negotiation. I hope that Safeco upholds the contract and policy language that guarantees damages restored to preexisting conditions (Policy OZ04605902).
My policy has Replacement Cost Value (RCV) represents the current cost of repairing the item or replacing it with a similar one. My policy does have RCV for the listed items. Please modify the original claim from Patch and Refinish to replace the entire floor as there is no other alternative acceptable solution on the table. If Safeco refuses to uphold the terms and conditions of our policy, I will be forced to submit claims to the Better Business Bureau and the State Of Missouris Department of Insurance.
My wife and I plan to reside in this home the remainder of our lives. Neighbors and friends who had floors refinished ended up replacing those 4-5 years down the road as the finish did not withstand daily usage. 900 SF of this floor is in an open area and is not broken up by walls or doors.
Please re-evaluate your position with this claim. So far if I had to rate my claims experience on a scale of 1-10 I would give it a 2!
Product or Service Mentioned: Safeco Insurance Homeowners Policy Claim.
Reason of review: Poor customer service.
Monetary Loss: $12000.
Preferred solution: Full refund.
I didn't like: Safeco claims group and team leader jason.