May 2016 Foreword: Doom & Gloom of working with insurance companies


At the RIA’s International Restoration Convention & Industry Expo in Orlando recently, I was privileged to attend several workshops that were truly beneficial to restoration business owners and managers.

One session, however, seemed kind of “gloom and doom” to me: “A Wary Relationship on a Precipice,” which was a town-hall style panel debate about the conflicts between restoration contractors and insurers. Pete Consigli, the moderator of this session, a devout RIA supporter and a true friend of the restoration industry, publicly called me out for being quiet on this issue in the pages of Cleanfax; I have tough skin, so that’s OK. Plus he warned me in advance — Pete is that kind of guy. Thanks, Pete!

Why have I been silent on this issue between restoration contractors and insurance companies? Because I see things a little differently, perhaps just like you do .

One comment at the session was how both the insurance industry and restoration contractors face a gap and are at a precipice. And to narrow the gap, both sides have to give up something. Pete makes many references to “narrowing the divide.”

This makes sense, the fact that both sides have to give up something to narrow the divide. However, I have to say, the insurance industry isn’t going to “give up something,” and you, as a restoration contractor, can’t afford to “give up something.”


Insurance companies are powerful. They know it, I know it and you know it. They aren’t going to give up profits to make life easier on you, the restoration contractor serving their clients. Do you think the CEOs, presidents and top brass of insurance companies are gathering around their desks, biting their nails, wondering how to narrow the gap or divide with restoration contractors? I don’t think so.

So what’s the solution to this issue of narrowing the divide, closing the gap?

It’s simple. A basic business-building principle. What you must do is choose with whom you do business. There are insurance companies and adjusters in your marketplace you will never work with and who will always try to cut your invoice and give you grief. There are also plenty of others with whom you can work and will find w ill be fair when it comes to paying your invoice and won’t give you grief. jeff cross signature

When you see that gap, that divide, accept it. Move on. Nothing is changing soon . So get busy, find those insurance professionals you can work with and add in other businessbuilding components that are proven to get you work and increase profitability.


Please send your comments, thoughts or article ideas to Jeff Cross, executive editor of Cleanfax: [email protected].

Jeff Cross

Jeff Cross is the ISSA media director, with publications that include Cleaning & Maintenance Management, ISSA Today, and Cleanfax magazines. He is the previous owner of a successful cleaning and restoration firm. He also works as a trainer and consultant for business owners, managers, and front-line technicians. He can be reached at [email protected].

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