We are quickly approaching hail season so today I’m going to talk to you about the independent adjusting companies you should be onboarding with, so you have a shot at getting work this hail season.
While hailstorms don’t grab the mainstream headlines like a major hurricane, independent adjusters and auto damage appraisers often get more work opportunities from hailstorms, more consistently, than hurricanes.
To get that work you’ve got to be on the right rosters.
Not all rosters are created equal and there are several types of rosters you’ll want to be on if you want the best shot at having dimes, nickels, and quarters raining into your bank account. The wrong ones will leave you at home or at worst holding the bag by not paying you.
During my 13 years as an independent appraiser and adjuster I focused 6 of them on just working hail claims during the hail season. I was on the first call list of several rosters and I worked the majority of the hail season. I’ve handled hail claims for 15+ different independent adjusting and appraisal companies and mentored thousands of independent adjusters and appraisers as they dove into the world of catastrophic adjusting.
Let’s look at what you need to know to get ready for this hail season.
(if you want to listen to an audio version of this topic you can check out our episode on the Independent Adjuster Podcast at the top of this post)
When is Hail Season?
Hail season in the United States begins in March and ends in August.
Occasionally, there are smaller hailstorms in February or September, but that is abnormal. If you are clearing your calendar, you’ll want to prepared to be deployed to a hail season during the traditional months of March to August.
Millions of homes and vehicles are damaged each hail season.
This large claim volume provides a big need for independent adjusters to help with the concentrated spikes in claim volume. It can be a great boost in income for independent adjusters and auto damage appraisers handling auto or property claims.
What States are The Busiest During Hail Season?
The states that get the most hail claims during a hail season are,
6. North Dakota
7. South Dakota
The thing to note is that it doesn’t have to hail consistently in a state to produce work for an independent adjuster or auto damage appraiser.
In 2022 Minnesota was blasted with three major hail storms during the hail season and produced a lot of work for independent adjusters. Kentucky is another state that experiences tornados and hail storms that produce work for adjusters that doesn’t make the top ten.
To summarize the largest volume of claims will come to the Midwest states during the hail season, but all the way to the East Coast can experience hail. Hail rarely falls further West than the Rocky Mountains.
States to Get an Adjuster Licenses for the Hail Season
The top 10 adjuster licenses you should have heading into the hail season are,
4. New Mexico
10. North Carolina
States That You Don’t Have to Get an Adjuster License for the Hail Season
Here are the states that are affected by hail, but don’t require you to have an adjusters license to handle claims in their state,
1. Colorado – this is the most hailed on place in the world!
6. North Dakota
7. South Dakota
You can work any of these states without getting an adjuster license for that state. But most independent adjusting firms will require that you have at least one adjusting license even to work in those non licensed states.
Be sure to pass your state adjuster exam and obtain your adjuster license so you meet their qualifications to work catastrophic hail claims in the non-licensing states.
How Hail Season Provides Work For Adjusters in Unaffected States
Even if you are working daily claims as an independent adjuster or auto damage appraiser in a state that doesn’t experience hail during the hail season you will likely see an increase in claims during the hail season.
As the catastrophic hail season ramps up people will begin to travel to where the work is. They may leave their normal coverage area where they were getting claim volume that is now shifted to you. Filling in coverage gaps for independent adjusting or appraisal firms when catastrophic adjusters leave their coverage area for cat work is a way to create great way to get more work and to develop relationships with your daily claim companies.
Also the same storms that produce hail in the Midwest will still bring wind, tornadoes, and thunderstorms even if it isn’t severe enough for hail.
People traveling through hail prone states on vacation often finish their trip before having their vehicle inspected.
Even if you aren’t in a Midwest state it benefits you to know how to handle hail damage claims and be prepared this hail season because it is likely your volume will across increase.
Different Types of Adjusting Rosters to Get On for Hail Season
There are 3 major types of adjusting rosters you’ll want to get on for the hail season,
1. Catastrophic Independent Adjusting Firms
2. Daily Auto Damage Appraisal Companies
3. Paintless Dent Repair Companies
Each one of these handle claims in a slightly different role, but can provide you work as an independent adjuster or auto damage appraiser.
Let’s look at the difference between them and find you some companies to connect with.
Catastrophic Independent Adjusting Firm Rosters To Get On This Hail Season
Some catastrophic independent adjusting firms you should onboard with are,
1. TheBest Claims Solution
3. Alacrity Solutions
4. CNC Catastrophe & National Claims
5. QA Claims
6. Mid-America Catastrophe Services
7. Pilot Catastrophe
8. Crawford & Company
9. EA Renfroe
10. Royal Adjusting
There are many other great companies out there, but that should get you started.
These companies typically deploy you as a licensed independent adjuster to the area as a 1099 or w2 employee and they expect you to only work for them until you are done with the deployment.
Even if hired as a w2 understand that you are on a temporary assignment. It can be for 2 days, 2 weeks, or 2 months and there is no guarantees when getting deployed how long you will be deployed for.
The adjuster pay that you will receive will vary greatly depending on the type of claims, your agreement, and your experience.
You could be paid hourly, per claim, per day, or based on a fee schedule.
Daily Auto Damage Appraisal Company Rosters To Get On This for Hail Season
The best auto damage appraisal companies to get on this hail season are,
1. ACD – Auto Claims Direct
2. SCA Claims
4. Legacy Claims Services
5. IAS – Insurance Appraisal Services
6. ClaimSolution Inc
7. Doan Group
These companies are hiring you as a 1099 auto damage appraiser and there are many others out there you can contact as well.
You will not be writing the check on behalf of the insurance company. Your job will be to inspect the damages on the vehicle and to write an estimate. Therefore you are not required to be a licensed adjuster to handle their claims.
They deploy auto damage appraisers to the hail affected area during the hail season to help with spikes in claim volume.
Unlike independent adjusting firms you are able to work for more than one company on a storm and often they will assign you a batch of claims to complete. Rather than being on an endless assignment you are usually there to complete the number of claims they assigned you.
These opportunities are often 3-20 days long depending on the claim volume assigned to you. You are paid on an agreed upon per claim basis. This is beneficial to you because the faster you complete the work the more money you can make in a quicker amount of time.
Once you have completed your work in the hail damaged area you can return to your daily work in your normal coverage area.
Paintless Dent Repair Company Rosters To Get On This Hail Season
The paintless dent repair companies you should contact this hail season are,
1. Nexterra (part of Dent Concepts)
3. Dent Zone (PDR Linx)
4. Dent Wizard
5. Hi-Tech Paintless Dent Repair
What is a Paintless Dent Repair Company?
Paintless dent repair companies repair hail damaged vehicles in a way that the vehicle doesn’t have to be painted.
They use special tools to massage the hail dent from the backside of the panel. When they can’t get behind the panel they glue rubber tabs onto the dents and pull them up using a tool called a slide hammer.
More and more paintless dent repair companies are helping insurance carriers and sometimes independent adjusting firms handle the large volume of hail claims during the hail season.
Because they are experts in identifying and counting the number of dents on a vehicle they are often better suited to handle these claims than a typical adjuster or appraiser who only sees a hail damaged vehicle occasionally.
These paintless dent repair companies, also known as PDR companies, hire independent adjusters and appraisers to assist them in scoping the damaged vehicles.
Typically paintless dent repair companies hiring appraisers and adjusters on a per day basis. The pay range can be from $300 – $750 per day.
Occasionally they will hire someone to complete claims on a per claim basis.
What Are Independent Adjusting Firms Looking For This Hail Season
After talking with 30+ independent adjusting firms since the beginning of the year they are looking for adjusters and appraisers who,
1. Are licensed adjusters
2. Have experience writing claims
3. Accurately scope vehicle damage
4. Can reliably status and communicate
5. Can write an estimate in CCC One, fast!
6. Are willing to travel at a moments notice
7. Understand the auto damage claim process
How to Get Work This Hail Season
The biggest thing independent adjusting firms of all kinds want is to be able to trust you.
If you don’t have experience, IA Path can help you build that trust with our Auto Collision Damage Certification. It gets the 2-5 year experience requirement waived with 40+ adjusting firms.
We are also rolling out a 2nd level to this certification in about a month. It will be an Auto Catastrophic Damage Certification where we test you on hail and flood claims.
If you want to know more about how a hail deployment works and how to handle auto hail claims you can check out the Hail Adjuster’s Playbook.