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how to become a flood adjuster

how to become a flood adjuster

People often ask me how to become a flood adjuster.

First , let’s talk about who can qualify to become one.

Wind & Hail Adjusters Mitigation Estimators Construction Estimators
Interior Designers Insurance Agents Engineers
Attorneys Auto Adjusters Liability Adjusters Building Consultants
Accountants Building Inspectors Appraisers

But FEMA has put specific requirements in place.

They have stated in the Flood Claims Manual that adjusting flood losses requires “Specialized Knowledge”.

But what does “Specialized Knowledge” mean?

In short, FEMA wants to know if you have the experience to estimate labor and material costs caused by or from a general condition of flooding.

Here is an example of the requirements for a residential manufactured home, travel trailer, and small commercial losses.

Requirements for FEMA – Residential

  • It requires 4 years of consecutive full time property loss adjusting.
  • You have to have the capability of estimating a mobile home to $50,000 or a residential home to $250,000 and commercial losses to $500,000.
  • You also have to attend the annual NFIP Claims Presentation once a year.
  • You have to demonstrate the standard flood insurance policy in the NFIP adjustment criteria for all policy forms.
  • You’ve got to be aware of the mobile home, travel trailer, increased of compliance, and coverage criteria.

FEMA also encourages you to have errors and omissions (E&O) insurance. Some WYO’s require that you carry that as an adjuster.

Requirements for FEMA – Large Commercial and RCBAP

For the Large Commercial and RCBAP (Residential Condominium Building Association Policy) there is a different set of rules.

  • You have to have at least 5 full consecutive years of property adjusting
  • You have to be able to adjust a large commercial loss up to $500,000.
  • You have to be able to adjust an RCBAP up to $1,000,000.
  • Once again it is required that you attend the annual NFIP Claims Presentation.
  • You must provide written recommendations from 3 insurance company supervisors or claims management personnel.

The recommendations must reflect your adjusting experience.

To work Large Commercial and RCBAP, the NFIP again encourages that you have errors and omissions (E&O) insurance.

Requirements for Private Flood

To work private flood insurance, there are no know requirements as stated in the FEMA guidelines.

However, to work private flood losses, adjusters are required to maintain an active state adjusters license, in the stat they work if required.

In addition, you must know the carriers “Best Practices” related to private flood adjustments.

Understand that there is a big difference between how to become a Flood Adjuster and how to become a Top Earning Flood Adjuster. 

How to Become a Successful Flood Adjuster

In order to be successful in adjusting flood losses, a flood adjuster must know:

1. How to professionally communicate with policyholders during a very stressful time in their life.

2. The NFIP policy and be able to show the Policyholder where coverage applies and does not apply.

3. How to write estimates that include all undisputed damages for recommendation to the carrier.

*Note: The most common estimating platforms are XM8 and Simsol; learning them on the first claim is not acceptable.

4. How to take correct photos in order to document the loss.

5. How to write reports and organize them in the correct order to submit to the carrier.

6. How to set reserves for the loss.

7. How to recommend advance payments.

8. How to get the policyholder to sign the Proof of Loss.

9. How to do this as efficiently as possible to reduce the cycle claim time.

How to Become a Top Earning Flood Adjuster

To learn more how to become a top earning flood adjuster, sign up for the free Flood Adjusters Mini Course. In it I cover:

  1. How to become a flood adjuster?
  2. How much flood adjusters can make.
  3. Common mistakes to avoid.
  4. The importance of knowing the policy.
  5. Why training is necessary?