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Construction LawFireWater Damage

Matterport: Construction Law-Damage Claims4159

WGAN Forum
Founder &
WGAN-TV Podcast
Atlanta, Georgia
DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user
Hi All,

A Member of the Forum writes. (And, my reply appears below ...




I went back and watched your video from about 9 months ago concerning the scanning of a water damaged dwelling.

I live in hurricane-threatened areas. Somewhere near me has a water / wind claim occurrence every few years, often catastrophic ones.

I have been approached by a lawyer who does construction law who is interested in starting a service to document before/after for claim expedition and fair claims. I'm thinking that I wouldn't see any income until after a loss has occurred and has been compensated, but then the payback would be very handsome.

Are you aware of any other such models? Can you offer your experience or somewhere I can turn? MP doesn't even have a good example of an insurance valuation model on their website

Thanks for your help -



Here's how I plan to reply. Additional thoughts?



Hi [redacted],

Thanks for reaching out.

I the idea of working with a construction lawyer that wants to use Matterport as part of the claims settlement process.

In residential real estate, I always talk about helping agents win more and bigger listings more often because that's following the money.

You'll want to stay focused on following the money with the construction lawyer.

For example, you might add to your list of questions ... if/how/when the lawyer makes money. Contingency? Percent of claim above the amount the adjuster is asking?

I could imagine the lawyer wants to pay you if the lawyer gets paid. That's fine, if you understand your business risk of getting paid. For example, "x" chance of getting paid "x" amount. So, if there is only a 25 percent chance that you will get paid, then you likely would want to get paid 4 times as much (or more) for the business risk.

What I like about a deal like this:

✓ high potential upside
✓ no competitors (once you strike your deal)
✓ it's in potential large space (for you)

When you do your pricing, keep in mind that the Scope of Work might include you testifying in court that you did this scan at this property and that you did not alter the space, etc.

I could imagine that:

1. It's a messy job (may need protective covering; age your gear faster)
2. In hurricane-threatened areas, you may be challenged getting to the locations; not have power to charge; not have internet to upload, etc.
3. The business model may only work for largest homes or businesses. (And, big spaces is not a strength of Matterport. For example, you would like to be part of the contingency for a 100,000 sq ft space than a 3,000 sq ft home. BUT, the 100,000 sq ft commercial space might be better shot with one or more of these 44 1-click 360 Camera solutions. So, ask some more questions about the importance of the scanning data (measurements) or how will the 3D/VR tour be used (may be a faster/better solution).

Have I answered your question? I could imagine that Members of the We Get Around Forum Community will have thoughts too. I posted your question anonymously to help crowd-source feedback.



P.S. Matterport may have backed off insurance as a category that it highlights. Seems like it was prominent in the early days on their website and then puff. Gone.
Post 1 IP   flag post
WGAN Forum
Founder &
WGAN-TV Podcast
Atlanta, Georgia
DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user
Hi All,

I received this follow-up ...



Thanks for your help, Dan. I'm going to pursue it anyway as a unique niche. I'm also friendly with the head of a major disaster company located in [redacted]. I would so enjoy turning that industry on its head!

Post 2 IP   flag post
GarySnyder private msg quote post Address this user
Great comments Dan. In litigation cases as Dan stated you will most likely be called to testify as it’s your equipment that is the prime evidences. Be aware that the MP camera can have major issues especially if sunlight gets in your shot. You also have to take into consideration that the camera need to be a firm footing and keep it level to get the kind of alignment you will need so MP can stitch the pano’s.

You need to show the lawyer the shortcomings of the camera since it's going to be the main generator of evidence in their claims case hearing. You'll also have to factor in your time, perhaps a full day as well as mileage, even food and accommodations. I'd have an iron clad contract drawn up by a lawyer that covers you in every way as you’re not talking about small sums of money.

You also have to factor in the continuing cost of retaining all of these models for perhaps years. If you go out of business and the models were terminated you would have one hell of a liability issue. I feel you’d be much better off shooting these houses with a 360 camera like Theta S of Gear 360 which you can download the images at no additional cost. If you ever decide to close up shop you can just provide all of the images to the lawyer. 360’s aren’t as sexy as a MP VT but they’ll cost you nothing to produce and there’s software that allows you to produce a 360 VT like Google’s Business View. Once you own the stitching software your only expense is your time to shoot these houses compared to $100+ PM you’ll have to pay MP.

These are just my thoughts, Good luck on your venture and let us know how you get on.
Post 3 IP   flag post
nat_vanveen private msg quote post Address this user
@GarySnyder @DanSmigrod You both raise excellent points and awareness of what may be involved in this kind of work. It's a fascinating topic and I do think the service would be a valuable one... and maybe for the sake of preserving a record of historic buildings if they were destroyed.

I agree that the period of years you'd be required to retain the tour in hosting may be prohibitive, i.e. here in Oz that used to be 7 years for legal purposes, and um... will Matterport be hosting those in 7 years???

But apart from that... personally don't see the point of shooting with Matterport if you can use a 360 camera like Ricoh Theta S etc.

Cheers, Natalia
Post 4 IP   flag post
jfantin private msg quote post Address this user
I Agree with @nat_vanveen and @GarySnyder.

Matterport is not the right product for various reasons, but in the particular case of documenting before/after if the footage is going to be used for legal matters you have to consider the possibility of Matterport going bankrupt.

If Matterport goes bankrupt you will lose all your models.

For legal purposes I would go with a solution that allows me to keep the footage myself and uses a standard file format, so if you go out of business then simply hand over the files to the lawyer or any other person and the evidence will be available despite your business status.
Post 5 IP   flag post
WGAN Forum
Founder &
WGAN-TV Podcast
Atlanta, Georgia
DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user
@GarySnyder @jfantin @nat_vanveen

Hi All,

A lot of great thinking here.

My takeaways ...

1. Understand the needs of the client.
2. Understand the scope of the work.
3. Don't use a screw driver to hammer nails. (Just because you have a Matterport camera, doesn't mean it's the right tool.)

Post 6 IP   flag post
WGAN Forum
Founder &
WGAN-TV Podcast
Atlanta, Georgia
DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user

Hi All,

Congratulations. You now wear an insurance adjuster hat.

Do you recommend for the following water damage:

1. Matterport scan?
2. Ricoh Theta S 360ºs (and video with narration)
3. immoviewer tour via Ricoh Theta s
4. insta360 Air 360º photos (and video with narration
5. Other?



Water damage in my day-light basement home-office (discovered today and likely happened today (26 March 2017).

The 11-year-old hot water heater had a catastrophic failure, said our plumber of a million years that was on-site within an hour. The remediation company also arrived within an hour.

In the photo, you can see the LTV flooring is being removed to bring in the de-humidifiers and blowers. Yikes!

Not sure if the damage will be large enough to file a claim with our homeowners insurance.

But, if it is, what kind of documentation do you recommend and why? What if there was litigation, what documentation would you want and why?



P.S. Taking a hit for the community
Post 7 IP   flag post
nat_vanveen private msg quote post Address this user
@DanSmigrod A video with narration and close-ups... can't really tell from the photo that's it's about water damage, at first sight I thought it was just a mess... but with a vid you could lift up the flooring and show the water, and the old water heater... and also a 360.

I sincerely hope it all goes well for the member taking a hit for the community Dan!
Post 8 IP   flag post
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