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Last Post 05/20/2010 11:51 AM by  Ray Hall
SATELLITE ROOF TECHNOLOGY (FRIEND OR FOE)
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CatAdjusterX
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04/19/2010 8:58 PM

     

    SATELLITE ROOF TECHNOLOGY ( FRIEND OR FOE)

    Hey folks

    I would like to ask for your thoughts and opinions

    in regards to services like GEO ESTIMATOR and EAGLE VIEW that claim they can provide correct pitch and square footage with 99.9% accuracy with satellite imagery.

    These services  sound friendly in  situations where the roof is deemed unsafe , 2 story or higher where an adjuster cannot reach and in situations dealing with steep pitches and in those situations, the service is golden

    We are starting to hear alot more about these services and  they are showing up at more and more conferences and the last conference I attended with Team one in Ft. Worth had a session on Geoestimator and I see they are having another session with the upcoming Crawford conferences in Dallas and Atlanta

     My concern is will there come a time when carriers will come to the conclusion that it could be more cost effective to use Geo estimator on all roofs during a CAT and since that would dramatically shorten an adjusters presence at each risk and therefore allow IA's to inspect more risks per day, could this lead to a smaller fee schedule and a reduction of our yearly income ? 

     With these services being unable to gauge damage to a risks interior, I am not concerned that an IA's role in the field could ever be eliminated, but it could reduce our role during a CAT and that makes me wonder if we could see a reduced fee schedule.

    The situation that makes me think the most is could a carrier decide one day that these services are most cost effective than a live IA when dealing in terms of Hailstorms and the damaged caused from these hail storms and could the IA's role be eliminated  from what has been an IA's bread and butter for as long as I can remember.

    With some Carriers apparently  moving towards a preferred contractor, could we see a situation where future hail claims could be dealt with a Geo report and a roofer therefore eliminating the IA

     While automation is inevitable in almost everything, I hope that it won't  affect our industry till  many years down the road 

    Robby Robinson 

    "A good leader leads..... ..... but a great leader is followed !!" CatAdjusterX@gmail.com
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    Joeblack
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    04/19/2010 10:58 PM

    I am in favor of it. I see more and more people using it: general contractors, roofing contractors, and adjusters. I think it will get more and more popular in the future.

    I would guess that one day, if it can't be done already, the data from the satellite will be downloadable directly into the estimating software (Xactimate, Simsol, etc), and with the push of a few key strokes the software will write the roof estimate for you.

    However, there will always be the need for somebody (an adjuster) to determine if the roof has damage in the first place, count and/or circle the hail hits with chalk, determine what kind of roof is on the property (3-tab, dimensional, etc), determine how many layers are on the roof, count the pipe boots, chimneys, other vents, satellite dishes, determine appropriate depreciation if applicable, and inspect the interior damage.

    I don't think it is something to be afraid of. I think it is just another tool to use to be more productive.

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    Ray Hall
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    04/20/2010 12:41 AM

    Why would you hire a person technology can do for you.With this tec. and a good inside adjuster on a $50.000 dollor hail loss can be settled by email.Have the insured give you good long shots, from the ground by zooming in on 4 sides of the house and all roof slopes and all inside photos of rooms claimed with the room measurements. Send it by email back to adjuster, the adjuster adjust the losses send it back and the insured signs and sends back, and check is in the mail the same day. Most good adjusters could do 20 per day from home. No not at $750.00 their part each, more like 5% of what it cost now.

    If all storms end up like Ike in TX. This may cut down the reopens, as the insured presented the requested documents and agreed to the amount.

    my .02

     

     

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    dnjsdad
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    04/20/2010 1:29 AM

    I could see this maybe on a bad hail storm but what about when the damage is not visible from ground, shingles torn through fastners.  Are the shingles in repairable condition.  There are many variables and technology has its place, and in my opinion its place is to be used as a tool not a replacement device.  Also the sat. does not work on all risks if there are trees around the risk they can not get the measurements.  Just my 2 cents.

    Dnjsdad

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    claims_ray
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    04/20/2010 10:04 AM
    Ray I respect your beliefs however I believe that you have become an "Adjuster Naysayer" due to your subscription to the FICUS system that you have developed. I know that there has been a great influx of adjusters since the 4 in '04 which has made numerous people question the direction in which this field of work is headed however I do not feel that a few photos from the ground taken by an insured can determine hail damage unless that hail was substantial. I also believe that there will be many more reopened claims when a majority of claims are handled over the phone. I feel that the insureds for the most part feel more settled when they have a person at their home looking at the damage and listening to them. A phone adjustment is not very personal.
    The next thing that someone will say is how about if a contractor takes the photos documenting damage to the roof and submits them for the insured. We all know the can of worms that one will open up.
    The technology that is being developed is a tool made by man which means that it is not perfect however it is a usable tool.
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    Ray Hall
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    04/20/2010 10:37 AM

      Have you ever seen ZIP code adjusting. Its not new been around for over 50 years. If the house was in the ZIP that had baseball size hail, hard as a rock with sharp edges and you have the roof measurment all side photos and all roof slopes, all inside damaged photo,s  why do you need to send out someone who had looked at several hundred houses to inspect. After you have seen several hundred or several thousand the learning curve does not move that much. I think you don,t want to hear what I think is the future.

    Has the industry not conceded a 3 day school in TX. qualifies a person to measure rooms and roofs. The digital photo,s tells the story, it does not matter who pointed the camera in the direction of the damage. In the fringe area,s  a roof inspection may be in order. Satellite photo,s can be made of roof damage from hail hits, but it is not used, If these photo,s were sold for $50.00 each the climbing days are over.

    I also think more files will reopen in the future, by the lawyers, roofers, PA,s and the first estimate has NO IMPACT on the final settlement up in the 100 thousand range to keep it from a jury trial.

    I think most people are honest, but over payment on a catastrophe claim is not a moral problem with all citizens. What is a overpayment.?

     This is the war in TX. now.

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    GWright
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    04/20/2010 3:50 PM
    I think we should build robots with rotating red eyes and jet packs on their backs loaded with the latest Xactware technology to measure and pay all claims. Just think, they could even print the check out of their own chest and possibly do the insureds taxes while they were there.

    All we have to do is pay em in 10w-30 motor oil and WD-40.

    Hear that????? Thats the sound of all the air whooshing out of Rays head right now!
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    Allan Freeman
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    04/20/2010 3:54 PM

    In my opinion, most homeowners may not know how to read a tape measure, or they feel they shouldn't have to because they are paying for the insurance, so they should handle it. With the photos currently being used by the "eyes in the sky", may be a couple of years old,  you could be looking at old damage if they were taking that good a picture. I think the majority want someone at their house, makes them feel like the ins co cares.

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    claims_ray
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    04/20/2010 5:31 PM
    The technology may be available to view current condition of the roofs however the technology may be limited to governmental use or cost prohibative. I recently saw that farmers were using current satellite views to determine when and how much to spray a salt water defoliant on cotton to allow harvest however they aren't looking as close as hail damage would need to be observed and are using infrared viewing.
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    Tom Toll
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    04/20/2010 6:20 PM

    Can you imagine the liability involved if an inside adjuster worked a roof claim with a satelitte photo for measurment, then asked the insured to get on a ladder and take photos of the roof. Then the insured falls from the ladder and injures him/herself seriously. Even if the photo was taken from the ground and he or she fell and broke something, Lawsuit city, here we come, after all, the insurance company rep asked them to do it.

    Service is what this country is lacking in and seriously lacking. Seems everybody wants to robotize and electronically connect with each other. I guess I am a little old fashioned. I don't text, nor will I ever text, not when I want to communicate with someone. Texting has become a game and some have become  addicted to it. Guess it is better than a dope addiction however.I have no problem with electronically receiving and sending in claims information because that benefits the insured more than it does you or me. Use technology wisely. Don't go crazy with it.

    Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.
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    Ray Hall
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    04/20/2010 10:13 PM

    All catastrophe adjusters gather around. You call the insured to inspect his property and he say,s I have damage, but put me on your 30 day list as I was screwed by the adjuster who came out on Hurricane Ike. hired a lawyer and I did get several hundred thousand more. When I get my claim togather I will call you one week before I file my sworn proof of loss.

    The insured calls and said all the damage is straight foward, and I have left photos and receipts for my cash outlays on my office desk for you to take with you. You inspect the house and contents and find extensive wind damage to the roof and water damage to the interior and its contents. The coverage is a HO-3. You inspect while the insured is out of town and email him your estimate in 72 hours. The insured rejects your first offer and states he will hand deliver the sworn proof of loss to the storm manager that afternoon.

    The insureds sworn proof of loss is 5 times higher than your original offer. The insured gets a check for your estimate amount. The insured has no further contact with you and files suit using the same lawyer he used on his Ike Claim on the first day the claim was not paid as per the contract.

    Now what did you do right and what did you do wrong. The bigger question is will he get several thousand dollors more than your first offer, without ever picking a jury.

     

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    CatAdjusterX
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    04/23/2010 12:13 AM

    

    I  would like to ask you guys if Eagleview satellite roof measuring service now being integrated directly into Xactimate 25.5 and Xactimate 27 something that has been around awhile or a new development ?

    If in fact this is a recent development,  is this something some carriers would look at  this as being more efficient and cost effective than a live IA.

    I pretty much asked the same question about eagleview and geoestimator and the consensus was the service itself is  unlikely to eliminate the IA ,

    so with the service now intergrated with Xactimate, does that change anyone's thoughts ?

    I copied/pasted the Xactware integration with eagleview at the bottom of this post.

                                                                                                 thank you for your consideration

     

                                                                                                                      Robby Robinson

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Xactware® Integration


     

    Now integrated with Xactimate®. No need to draw from field notes. Order EagleView measurements within Xactimate and open the files in Sketch. Easy to use! EagleView imports directly into Xactimate when you order it within an assignment in the Carrier Profile.


     

    Requirements: Xactimate version 25.5 or greater, qualifying EagleView account, and activation by Xactware.


     

    For more information please contact our Sales department by phone at 1-866-659-8439 or by email at sales@eagleview.com

    "A good leader leads..... ..... but a great leader is followed !!" CatAdjusterX@gmail.com
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    Ray Hall
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    04/23/2010 12:54 AM

    Catastrophe adjusters take note. Well now the program can be intergrated into the program that estimates over 80% of all roof claims, may even be 90%(simsol still does a lot of local IA's regular losses and flood claims on cats). The IA cat. adjusters will always have a job, thats a given. Its kinda like the TV repairman with the large Tube and the vacum tubes inside... replaced by new tec. Just stay ahead of the curve...

    Like some old guys that have 3 rules. 1. Don,t burn bridges when you are young. 2. Do better work than most. 3 Cut your rates and work direct for 35% less than the established fee,s.

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    ALANJ
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    04/23/2010 11:34 AM
    Ray:

    There is a Allstate agent two doors down from my office. He showed me a eagle view roof diagram that one of the Pilot guys just used on one of their storm claims. It's here and already being used to handle claims.
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    Ol' Ghost
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    04/23/2010 12:21 PM
    Ray, your tales of the Great Houston Lawyers Blackmail War is starting to be interesting. Since the carriers won't be wanting us to fight their wars for them with all this brave new world technology, who says we can't fight the wars for the Blackmailing Lawyers? After all, who's to say whose morals are 'right' if those we fought for once won't use us? If the Blackmailing Lawyers WILL pay us, being the independents we are, where is the sense of guilt at working for those who will hire us? Sure, once the jump is made to the other side you can't or won't be allowed back over the fence. But then, if one is making enough money over there, who cares?

    Personally, I'd just as soon get in my time machine and whiz back to 1972 to start over when high tech meant a pocket calculator and what was inside a man's head was what mattered.

    Ol' Ghost
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    Ray Hall
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    04/23/2010 7:52 PM

    I am sure the carriers have thought about the Texas blackmail. Many of these law firms will open in any state that gets hit. I think on the next hurricane, it would be better to ask "how much will it take to make this hurricane loss go away....forever... I really think it would save $.

    I don,t think one of the Texas cases have gone to "appraisal" after suit is filed..... but the courts are "taking it under advisement"...O boy.I don,t think one has been set for trial.... but thousands have been sttled in mediation. goody goody justice is served. only cost 100k to settle+50K legal cost.

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    rstewadjuster1
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    04/25/2010 9:48 AM
    The orbits of the satelites are for the most part in a fixxed position, unless there military. Now they can move them at a great cost, there is only so much fuel onboard the satelite. That is why these services have not covered all areas of the country. Look at Goggle maps, and look at your home. The photos are old now. I mayself have added 2 roofs to my home. There a no show on the satelite photos i've seen. So, I think unless more satelites go up, I have no worries about this career.

    Rstew
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    brighton
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    04/25/2010 5:01 PM
    Hanover and I'm sure other carriers are requiring the satalite view be included in the estimate. Could be that someone in the past was caught using photos of who knows what risk and submitting them as the property in question. Once you get a fly-over or satelite view of the residence and measurements unless there is additional damage to siding, windows or outbuildings, the need for a field person is reduced to confirming damage, how many layers of roofing are there and the style of the roof. This would reduce the billing fee as no estimate would be prepared by the person inspecting the risk. That would be done by an inside person either staff or someone on day rate. Could be the beginning of flat fee basis. Who knows.

    This is the new age. Those of us who began with the take 4 poloroids, diagram on the back of the file, write the estimate at the house and pay with the notes in the file being "I recd claim, called insd, set appt. Insp risk. Hail damage to roof, siding, and outbuilding. Wrote est at risk, issued payment close file." No xm8, no computer period. Lots more claims inspected, lots more happy insureds as they got their check on the spot and very few call backs. If the carrier wants the fly-over or sat shot, who are we to argue? If having food, a roof over your head, fuel for the vehicle and money to pay for goverment approved mandated health care are your needs, then you do what is told of you and go on down the road. It does no good to gripe about it. How many of us hate, have hated xm8 and the way they treat us? Still, we use it as if we do not, there is no work comming from a lot of carriers.
    Rocke Baker
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    JimGary
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    04/25/2010 7:44 PM
    At some point I am sure that satellites will be the standard for handling claims. At some point we will walk around a home or auto and dictate damage into a microphone and voice recognition software will fill in the estimate without us typing, sketching, or writing anything. I'm pushing 50 now, I think my place and current methods will for the most part be secure at least till I retire. There will be some changes I'm sure, but as long as I need a job, I'll make the best of it.

    JWG
    I know the voices aren't real, but sometimes they're right!
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    ChuckDeaton
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    04/25/2010 11:38 PM
    Jim, I do almost what you describe, using a top of the line Sony digital voice recorder that attaches to and uploads to my computer, Dragon Dictate, voice recognition, converts my voice to a Word document so that I can print the verbal scope. The estimate is not written directly but I put the scope on one screen and write the estimate on another screen. The photos are on a third screen so that I can review them as I write the estimate.The photos are cued to the scope. I may put an engineer's report on a fourth screen.

    As I write this I have two estimates, one from a PA and one from the IA, up on two screens, I have Excel on a third screen and images on a fourth screen and an engineer's report that I can pull up. I am building a workbook comparison of the two estimates and the damage preparing to assist defense attorney's and be involved in settlement discussions and possibly as a witness if this goes to trial.

    "Prattling on and on about being an ass with experience doesn't make someone experienced. It just makes you an ass." Rod Buvens, Pilot grunt
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