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Texas Department of Insurance
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March 4, 2024

Insurance claim tips for Texas wildfires


Residents whose property was damaged by the Texas wildfires should contact their insurance company to file a claim as soon as possible. 

These tips can help when making a claim:

  • Keep a list of everyone you talk to at your insurance company. Be ready to answer questions about the damage.
  • Ask about additional living expenses. If you can’t stay in your home because of the damage, your policy might cover the cost of a hotel or other living expenses.
  • Take steps to secure your home and prevent more damage.  Make only temporary repairs and save your receipts.
  • Make a list of damaged property. Take pictures or video of the damage. Don't throw anything away until your insurance company tells you to.
  • Try to be home when the insurance company comes to inspect the damage. If you can’t stay in your home, leave a note on how you can be reached.

Avoiding fraud

When it’s time to make repairs or rebuild, do your research to select the right contractor.

These tips can help you avoid problems:

  • Get more than one bid. That will help you decide which offers are too high or too good to be true.
  • Try to use a local contractor. Don’t sign a contract with blanks to be filled in later.
  • Check references and phone numbers. Call the Better Business Bureau to see if a contractor has had complaints.
  • Avoid contractors who offer to waive your insurance deductible. Paying your deductible or promising a rebate of it is illegal in Texas. 
  • Don't pay in full up front. Make your last payment when the work is done.

Questions about your insurance? Call  TDI’s Help Line at 800-252-3439  from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. 

For more information, contact:

Last updated: 3/13/2024