Friday, January 9, 2009

State Farm Creates State of Confusion

According to JD Power and Associates, there are key points in a person’s interaction with a business in which they become either an advocate for that company or an assassin against that company. State Farm sure isn’t turning me into advocate.

Let me explain.

I’ve had State Farm since I was 16 years old. Every bit of my insurance is with them (for the time being), including auto, home and life, which is why this so disappointing.

The remnants of Hurricane Ike hit my area late last year with winds of more than 80 mph. Shortly thereafter, I noticed my neighbors started having their roofs replaced. I became concerned that my roof might be damaged, too.

I called State Farm. They sent an adjustor. He told me there were a few damaged spots on my roof … below my deductible, of course. Many other shingles were turned up at the edges, but this was due to an installation method called racking, he said.

Having never heard of racking, I called a roofer for a second opinion. He said 80 percent of the shingles on my roof were loose, caused by the wind. A second roofer rendered the same opinion. A second State Farm adjuster was dispatched.

“Racking,” he said, as he explained to me how wind can miss one house while hitting the next two.

Ironically, my neighbor was introduced to “racking” too, at first. Then he protested. Then the insurance company cut him a check. That insurance company was State Farm … the same State Farm that I’ve paid premiums to for nearly three decades.

In fact, State Farm is replacing roofs all over my subdivision. Why they’ve drawn the line at me is anybody’s guess. I do know this: I’m not feeling much like an advocate.

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