Roof repairs, while necessary to your comfort and your home’s long-term stability, can become expensive fairly quickly. Insurance can certainly help, but are you sure your policy covers everything you’ll need? Sometimes the fine print hides crucial exclusions or stringent rules that make filing a claim difficult.
Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to cooperate with your insurance provider and get repairs covered during an emergency event. Even if they can’t or won’t cover the entire job, following their preferred procedure will ensure you get a good amount of your money back. Let’s take a look at what to do to begin filing an insurance claim for roof damages.
Read Your Policy in Detail
Before you actually buy an insurance policy, read it in detail and make sure you know exactly what’s covered and what’s not. But by now, you’ve probably already had this policy for a while and want to take advantage of it. It still pays to read your policy carefully for any conditions or stipulations you may not have known about. For instance, several policies depend on the age of your roof. While some may cover up to 20 years, some policies expire after 10 years. You’re better off just replacing the entire damaged roof in a case like that.
As soon as it’s safe to do so, take a look at your roof’s interior and exterior. Take pictures of any sign of damage, even if it seems minor, for your insurance company to investigate. Label each picture with the date, time, and a brief explanation of what you noticed that concerned you.
Pro Tip: While you can certainly perform a cursory inspection of the damage, your insurance company is likely to take an expert’s opinion more seriously. Have a local roofing contractor inspect the damages and send your provider a detailed report.
Call Your Insurance Agent
Now that you have the relevant information from your policy and the documentation of damages, it’s time to contact your insurance company and begin the claim process. Continue to document any and all information they give you as you work through the problem. Your roofing company should be involved in this process as well to provide their estimate of repair costs and help advocate for you during the claim.
Insurance for Your Roof
Don’t wait for your home or roof to suffer storm damage before pursuing quality insurance coverage. Even better, if you already have good insurance, take the time to study your coverage in detail and speak with an agent about any potential concerns. Waiting till an emergency situation to start learning how to file a claim for roof damage is perhaps one of the worst things a homeowner can do.
Join the conversation to learn more about filing a roof claim and protecting your home.
Anyone familiar with severe Houston weather knows it’s very possible to take a lot of wind damage very quickly in a storm. At best, you might lose shingles and get a few leaks. At worst, half your roof could get blown off. The potential effects are simply unpredictable. And, unfortunately, wind damage roof insurance claims are not often addressed in insurance discussions.
Are You Covered?
Before any severe weather arrives, make sure you know the details of these 4 critical points about your roof insurance. Knowing the full extent of your insurance coverage and preparing for the worst could save you an immense amount of money and frustration later on.
- Most insurance policies cover wind damage
- What is an anti-concurrent causation clause?
- Insurance will choose the cheaper option
- Avoid storm chasers
1) Most Insurance Policies Cover Wind Damage
Even if there are only a few sentences about wind damage in the fine print of your insurance information, you’re almost guaranteed at least partial coverage. The real question is how much cover do you have in practice, and when will the insurance company pay? Start by reading all the fine print in your policy and discuss this question directly with an agent when you can.
Pro Tip: In some areas, wind damage insurance coverage is mandatory. In other areas, this coverage is optional and may not be provided by major insurance companies. Make sure you know what’s in your policy.
2) What is an Anti-Concurrent Causation Clause?
Simply defined, an anti-concurrent causation restriction states that if your home is affected by two disasters (such as roof damage and flooding) and only one disaster is covered, the insurance company may refuse to cover either expense. Obviously, this could be a nasty surprise to anyone already dealing with a devastated house. Don’t wait until the last minute to find out if your policy has this! If you aren’t sure, contact your insurance agent and ask them to clarify any language that seems confusing.
3) Insurance Will Choose the Cheaper Option
This will come as no surprise to anyone who has ever filed an insurance claim before. If your roof is badly damaged by wind, the insurance company will decide if repairing or replacing is the cheaper option, and will finance their choice. This policy usually makes sense. However, if the insurance company opts to repair an older roof with brand-new parts, the additions may not be compatible in terms of cosmetics or practicality. Talk with your insurance provider about potential compromises to this policy.
4) Avoid Storm Chasers
After a hurricane or severe weather event, plenty of out-of-town repair services see their chance to make quick money and swoop in on the desperate homeowners, offering “discounted” services. If a roofing company suddenly shows up and offers you repairs, don’t fall for their dishonest pitches. Stick with a local, reliable roofing company with a proven track record in your area. Not only will the final product be better in quality, but you’ll also avoid the scammy tactics of storm chaser companies.
Wind Damage and Roof Insurance Claims
The first step to restoring a wind-damaged home is fixing the roof. After all, an unprotected roof will continue to allow rain and wind inside the house, making damages worse. Make sure your insurance will help you get your roof back in shape so you can focus on more severe repairs.
Join the conversation to learn more about roof insurance claims and handling wind damage.