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Holder_A Restoration Contractor%27s Perspective on Contractor-Consultant Relationship

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A Restoration Contractor's Perspective on the Contractor-Consultant Relationship IAQA 18th Annual Meeting & Indoor Environment and Energy Expo (IE3) The views and opinions herein are those of the volunteer authors and may not reflect the views and opinions of IAQA. The information is offered in good faith and believed to be reliable but it is provided without warranty, expressed or implied, as to the merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose or any other matter. Introduction Building owners, property managersand insurance adjusters hire Restoration Contractors and Indoor Environmental Professionals (consultants) to clean up buildings and personal property (contents)damaged by water, sewer, mold, trauma incidents, and other perils. Hire decisions are typically made independently, yet everyone expectscontractors and consultants to gel into an effective teamregardless of whether theyhave ever worked together before. However, team building alone is insufficient to assure contractor-consultant team success. Insurance Repair Restoration work reimbursed by insurance (insurance repair) is a unique two-customer system that has specific requirements and limitations that vary by project. Consultants desirous of working with contractors on insurance repair projects must understand the system, follow the contractor's lead and assure their focus is on the needs and expectations of the two clients. Restoration contractors, insureds (clients), and insurance adjusters form a triangular relationship on insurance repair projects. The three are dependent upon each other for a project's success. Each party has a specific role to play in the property restoration process. The client hires the contractor, sometimes at the direction of the insurance adjuster.Clients make selections of materials and contents scheduled for replacement. Typically, clients are inexperienced with insurance claims which can lead to unrealistic expectations. They are often traumatized over the damage event and their lives become even further stressed if they are displaced from their home or business during repairs. The insurance adjuster determines coverage and policy limits. Adjusters approve the scope of work (SOW) and contractor pricing. Adjusters approve carrier payments to the contractor directly or indirectly through the client. The insurance policy is a contract that pays for damage repairs from specific perils. Repairs other than thoseoccurring as a result of a covered peril incident are excluded from the SOW. Replacement of damaged goods may be subject to depreciation and cannot exceed the criteria of 'like kind and quality'. Displaced clients with Additional Living Expense (ALE) coverage receive reimbursement from their carrier for shelter, food, and incidental expenses. The contractor performs the damage assessment, including hazardous material identification;develops the SOW and estimate, subject to adjuster approval; coordinates decisions with the client; and performs the repairs. The contractor serves two masters. A conundrum develops when the two have competing agendas. Clients may expect all damaged materials and contents to be replaced. Adjusters are duty-bound by the insurance policy to salvage everything possible and only to replace materials and contents that cannot be restored to pre-loss condition. Client and adjuster look to the

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