There aren’t many things more frustrating as a homeowner than when you need to pay for home repairs that you didn’t even cause. When a storm rolls through your area and damages your roof, you shouldn’t be expected to pay for the entire replacement. Thankfully, homeowners insurance will help cover some or all of the cost of a roof replacement in certain situations.
However, in order to get insurance reimbursement, you must follow specific rules and timelines. Follow the steps here so that you don’t get denied insurance coverage for a roof replacement.
Step 1: Check for Damage After a Storm
Different types of storms can cause roof damage, but the most common culprits are hail and wind. Even if the storm wasn’t super intense, it’s still essential to check for roofing storm damage after inclement weather. Even small areas of damage can cause expensive headaches down the line.
You can perform an initial assessment yourself if you feel comfortable. Get outside and check to see if there is any visible damage to your roof, such as:
- Missing shingles
- Shingle granule loss
- Loose debris
- Water leaks in the attic or other upper rooms
- Cracks or dents from hail
- Clogged or broken gutters
- Ice dams
Using a ladder will allow you to get a clearer picture of any damage on your roof, but be sure to always follow ladder safety tips so that you don’t fall and hurt yourself. If you’re unable or uncomfortable climbing ladders, call a professional roofer to come and inspect the damage. (This step is necessary down the line anyway.)
If you discover damages, be sure to take pictures and write down your observations. It’s possible that you may still have an insurance claim on your hands even if you can’t physically see any damage yourself. An expert roofer will be able to confirm or deny the presence of storm damage.
Step 2: Review Your Insurance Policy
Insurance companies don’t intentionally withhold compensation “just because,” but they do have policies in place to ensure they are only giving funds to homeowners who truly need it. When you signed up for homeowners insurance, you picked a policy with a certain level of coverage. Each policy covers different circumstances, repairs, and replacement services.
Before you begin filing a claim, it is necessary to reference your insurance policy to see if you are even covered for this specific situation or not. You don’t want to go through all the hassle of trying to file a claim when you were never paying for the coverage in the first place.
You should have access to your homeowners insurance policy either online or printed out. If you can’t find it, you can contact your insurance agency to ask for a copy. Many insurance policies have clauses that restrict you from waiting too long to file a claim, so it’s important to act fast after a storm so that you don’t lose out on coverage.
There are certain things that homeowners insurance does not cover in regards to compensating a roof replacement. They are:
- Damage from earthquakes, floods, or hurricanes (You need separate insurance for these.)
- Damage caused from a lack of proper maintenance
- A roof that has reached the end of its lifespan
- Any other damage the homeowner could have caused
Step 3: Get a Professional Roof Inspection
Before you can officially file an insurance claim, you will need to obtain a professional roof inspection from a roofing contractor. Most professional roofing companies will offer free inspections, so don’t hire anyone who makes you pay for it.
It’s okay to have multiple roofing companies assess your roof and give you an estimate, however; keep in mind that your insurance company may require you to choose the lowest estimate, which may not be the best quality.
When searching for a roofing company to perform an estimate, you can ask neighbors and friends for referrals or trust a company with fantastic online reviews. Make sure that the roofer is licensed, insured, and bonded. Any additional certifications and awards will help you feel more confident in their quality of work.
The roofing company will send a knowledgeable roofing professional to assess your damage and give you an estimate of how much it will cost to repair or replace your roof. You will include this information when you file an insurance claim.
Step 4: File an Insurance Claim
The final step in getting your insurance company to pay for your roof replacement is to file a claim. You should document all correspondence and evidence of damage throughout this entire process.
With the help of your insurance agent, you will submit a roofing claim using a form they provide. Be sure to include photographic evidence from you, the roofing contractors, or both. Act fast after a storm because if you wait too long to file a claim, your insurance company may not be able to decipher the difference between storm damage and negligent maintenance. You don’t want to lose out on the coverage you deserve.
Step 5: Replace Your Roof
An insurance adjuster will come out to your home to assess the damage themselves. If possible, have your chosen roofing contractor present so they can discuss your situation together.
When your claim has been approved, your chosen roofing company can begin your roof replacement, and your insurance company will reimburse you. Depending on your policy, you may have to pay the difference for a new roof, or insurance will cover the entire expense.
You Deserve the Best in Roof Insurance Claims
At Monarch Roofing, we’re no stranger to inclement weather and intense storms. Our seasoned professionals have helped hundreds of homeowners like you work with their insurance companies to get funding for a new roof.
Whether you need roof repairs or a total replacement after a storm, you can rely on our team to provide fast and free estimates and a helping hand with insurance claims. Contact our friendly experts today!