CLUE Report 101
A CLUE report provides detailed, historical information about property loss claims. The information in the loss history report can include details for up to seven years of past claims about an individual homeowner or property.
However, a CLUE report is much different from a 4-point inspection that insurance carriers can require.
CLUE reports are maintained by LexisNexis, a research company that provides information and reports for law firms, government agencies, businesses, and academic institutions.
Because the CLUE database can search more than 40 billion records from over 10,000 different sources, the report will include a detailed history of claims, no matter how big or small it was.
What’s On It
CLUE reports are a comprehensive listing of home insurance claims for an individual or property. The data can include:
Insurance company name
Date of loss and claims filed
Type of loss, such as wind damage, fire, or other peril
Claim number and whether the claim was denied or approved
The amount the insurer paid out
Address and other property information
Policyholder’s name, date of birth, and policy number
The report is especially helpful for potential buyers. It won’t tell you where the damage occurred, but it provides enough information that you can confidently ask the current homeowner to explain what happened and request documentation of repairs.
How it Works
More than 90 percent of insurance companies contribute claims information to the CLUE database. For example, when you file a claim for water damage, fire, or a fallen tree, your insurance carrier sends the information to the CLUE database, which then gathers, indexes, and organizes the insurance history.
Insurance companies review the information when you apply for homeowners coverage or request home insurance quotes.
If you’re purchasing a home, it’s in your best interest to review a CLUE report on the property before closing. It can influence insurance premiums, but it could also signal a red flag if there are major claims for substantial damage or chronic or repeated claims.
Do claims history reports affect your insurance?
CLUE reports are a standard source of information in the insurance industry. Ninety-six percent of insurers rely on CLUE reports when underwriting new policies, and the information can impact your insurance costs.
Previous home disasters can predict future insurance claims. For instance, if you make a claim for hurricane or wind storm damage, you’ll likely need to make a similar claim in the future. To balance the risk of possible claims, the company may increase your premiums.
Every insurer has its own methodology to determine rates. That’s why it’s important to get multiple insurance quotes when comparing home insurance options. If one company turns you down based on your CLUE report, another might offer you a policy (though it might be at a higher insurance rate).
The impact of CLUE reports isn’t always negative. If previous damage caused a home’s roof or windows to be replaced, the insurer will know those parts of the house are in good condition. Positive reports can make a property more desirable.