Important Things You Need To Know About Roof Hail Damage Insurance Claims
In states like Texas and Colorado, its not uncommon to get hail the size of golf balls or larger, which can lead to plenty of hail-related insurance claims. These large hailstorms can create thousands of hail damage insurance claims in a single area, overwhelming your insurance company and its adjusters, making the hail damage claim process long and complicated.
Today, were talking about one of the most common hail damage insurance claims: roof hail damage. Was your homes roof damaged in a hail storm? Does your business need a new roof after being damaged by hail? Here are the most important things you need to know about filing a hail damage insurance claim.
How To Claim Fence Damage On Homeowners Insurance
It’s likely when your roof is damaged to the point that it needs replacement, you’ll want to get a new one as quickly as possible — but that doesnt mean you should cut corners to speed things along. Your insurer could delay or even refuse a payout if you fail to follow proper procedure. As long as you file your claim correctly, your insurer should compensate you for any out-of-pocket expenses youre entitled to receive.
Show Your Contractor Your Insurance Paperwork
When you hire a roofing contractor to handle your insurance replacement, its crucial to show them your claim paperwork. This paperwork has important information they need to do the job correctly and in compliance with your insurance company.
It also protects you from inadvertently committing insurance fraud by making sure the items included in your claim are included in the contractors scope of work. And if you have any hesitations about showing your claim paperwork, your insurance company usually has a statement in their fine print telling you to share it with your roofing contractor.
For example, Travelers has the following statement:
Therefore, you and/or contractor should review this estimate carefully and let us know immediately if you have any questions prior to beginning any work.
If your own insurance company tells you to, then its safe to say that you should share your paperwork.
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Get A Detailed Report From An Independent Roofing Contractor
Ask for a written evaluation from the roofing contractor that addresses the issues listed above The extent and cause of the damage and the condition of the rest of the roof.
The inspection and report will cost up to $500, but it is money well spent if it is instrumental in getting your homeowners insurance claim paid.
If it comes to arbitration or court, it will be the word of an inspector against a roofer. If your roofing contractors report is credible, you will be in good shape.
Dont Settle for an Inferior Roof
This takes a little explaining, but it should be clear in the end.
When an insurer accepts a claim, it offers the homeowner a chunk of money.
It should be enough to replace your roof with materials of the same quality as the original roof including professional installation.
Heres the warning: It is the common practice of some insurance adjusters to offer a settlement that will only pay for inferior replacement materials.
Lets say your home has dimensional shingles, which is the most common type of asphalt shingles. Well, dimensional shingles come in basic, better and best quality.
Take CertainTeed or GAF shingles, for example. Both brands are the largest manufacturers of dimensional asphalt roofing shingles.
Here are three lines of shingles from CertainTeed that serve as an example:
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Preparing for Future Claims
Your Local Independent Agent Can Help You Make Smart Choices
Review your homeowners insurance with your local independent insurance agent. They can advise you on what your policy does and does not cover. They have the experience and expertise to help you make smart choices.
Most importantly, they will be there to help you when claim time comes. The outcome of homeowners insurance claims can be strongly impacted by how the process is approached and handled.
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Here Are 4 Steps To Get A New Roof On Your House
If you believe you need new homeowners insurance to protect your property, here are a few simple steps to get you the coverage you deserve.
1. Assess the damage to your roof. If you live in an area that experiences brutal storms that have caused damage to homes in your neighborhood. You should also check to see if there is visible damage to your roof. Utilizing a ladder and some basic roof safety techniques you should be able to see if there are missing shingles or divots in the roof from hail. Its ok if you are unable to see visible marks. You may still have a claim but you may need the eye of an expert to confirm your suspicions. Some damage is more obvious than others.
If after the assessment, you discover damages, you will need to document what you think the damage is or you can even schedule a consolation with a roofing expert.
To protect themselves, many homeowners insurance policies have clauses and stipulations where, if you wait too long to report the problem, the roof replacement becomes null on their side, and you are left to replace the entire damaged area yourself. So, it is best to call and submit your claim once you know for sure that it has been significantly damaged.
Full Coverage For Repairs
In some cases, full coverage is given for roof repairs but this is not common and most of the time, only parts of the costs would be covered. Full coverage is only given if your roof was previously in very good condition, was brand new, or if the cause of the damage, such as a storm, was included in the coverage.
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Tips: What To Do If You Get Roof Damage
Protect the home from further damage. If a tornado rips through your neighborhood and tears part of your roof off, protect your home from further damage. In fact, preventing further damage when possible is often a requirement in homeowners policies, and further damage may not be covered. You may need to put up a tarp while you alert your insurer.
Dont let the insurance company boss you around. Insurance companies are a business and may not have your best interests in mind when it comes to paying out roof damage claims. If youre not doing a good job of explaining what they should be paying you, they have no fiduciary obligation.
Youre entitled to fair trade pricing, so make sure you have a solid repair estimate. If you have a large or complicated claim, consider hiring a public adjuster to work on your behalf.
Dont get multiple estimates. If you get multiple estimates, your insurance company will want to see all of them and may only accept the lowest one. The lowest estimate may not be the best quality.
Consider roof material that can get you an insurance discount. Research materials that will be more durable than your past roof. Your insurance company might be willing to offer a discount for impact-resistant roofing. Check with the insurer on roof material discounts before you make a final pick.
What Roof Damage Is Not Covered
Standard home insurance covers a wide array of damage. However, some exclusions tend to be consistent across most policies:
- Wear and tear: Insurers consider roof maintenance to be a homeowner’s responsibility. If roof damage occurs as a result of something you could have taken care of, such as a rotted shingle, they will not cover it.
- Improper installation: If your roof wasn’t correctly installed, it can be difficult to assess the exact cause of damage. It’s not uncommon for home insurers to exclude poorly installed roofing from their policies.
- Some roofing materials: Due to their replacement cost or protection ability, some roofing material is excluded in a standard homeowners insurance policy. For example, wood shake roofing may not be covered due to its high flammability. Talk with your insurer to find out which roof materials they don’t cover.
- Rot, mold and vermin: Damage due to problems such as rot, mold and animals often happens over time. Home insurance only covers sudden and accidental damage, so these perils usually won’t be covered.
- Flood and earthquake: Standard home insurance does not cover these perils, but separate insurance policies are often available to provide coverage for them.
- Multi-layered roofs: Roofs made of more than one layer of material are costlier to replace. Also, the weight of a multi-layer roof increases the chance of collapse. Home insurers may have policy exclusions because of this.
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How Roof Coverage Works
Of all the parts of your home, the roof arguably has the most direct exposure to the elements. For northern climates, there is the weight of heavy snow and hail or ice storms. In the Midwest, tornados and cyclones are also common problems. In tropical climates, there is the potential for gales and hurricane-force winds.
Not only can Mother Nature do direct damage, but she can also trigger other sorts of havoclike a violent windstorm that topples a tree onto your roof. There may be wildfires. Or there could be more unlikely incidents, like something crashing down on the roof from abovelike debris from an explosion or aircraft.
Happily, the roof is an integral part of the structure of your home, and so the dwelling coverage section of your homeowners insurance policy typically protects you from such perils. Damage and destruction from such events qualify the homeowner for a total or partial replacement of the roof.
Coverage is often curtailed for roofs that are over 20 years oldthey may only be insured for their actual cash value, not for their current replacement cost.
What To Do Immediately After The Hailstorm
Did a hailstorm just hit your home or business? Here are some important things to remember for hail damage claims in the immediate aftermath of a hailstorm:
- Note the date and exact time of the storm, including when you believe hail damage to your property occurred.
- Take photos of your yard, home, and property after the storm, making sure to focus on areas of damage. The more photos you take, the better.
- Look for obvious signs of damage on your roof that need repair, like missing or torn shingles. Binoculars can be a useful tool for an initial look.
- Grab your tape measure and place it next to hailstones on the ground, then take pictures.
- Take pictures of your outside air conditioning unit, as hail can wreak havoc on air conditioners .
Remember: hail will melt. Your home might have been hit by golf ball-sized hail. However, if you dont have photos to prove it, then it could weaken your claim.
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For Example If Your Roof Is $25000 New And Is 15 Years Old On The Date Of A Claim And The Insurance Company Attributes A Rate Depreciation Of $1000 Per Year On The Roof Then They Will Subtract The Depreciation From The Value Of The New Roof And Only Pay You
Date of event , type of damage , condition of the house . Not paying your home insurance premium in a timely manner is enough reason for your provider to drop you. In summary, there is no immediate deduction allowed for the cost of a new roof for a personal residence. The insurance company will naturally try to get away with paying as little as possible. Understanding home insurance is important. For example, if your roof is $25,000 new and is 15 years old on the date of a claim, and the insurance company attributes a rate depreciation of $1,000 per year on the roof, then they will subtract the depreciation from the value of the new roof, and only pay you. insurance claim history can increase your rate in several ways. Of course, the goal is to not have your home insurance rates go up at all. The length of this type of claim depends on several factors including: For example, if it is a 10% pa agreement and your insurance company pays $30,000 to replace your roof, the pa receives $3,000 of that recovery, and you have $27,000 to fix your roof. You& #x27 re protected if your roof caves in from the weight of snow, damaging interior components such as walls, kitchen cabinets, and countertops. Yes , you may be eligible for the energy credit if the replacement equipment qualifies. If your roof is 20 years or older, getting a new policy or renewing your existing insurance can be difficult but not impossible.
Get A Professional Opinion
In fact, one of the best pieces of documentation can come from a professional roofer. An inspection will get a professional assessment of the roof, and that can clearly determine that the roof needs attention.
You can certainly look around for free roofing consultations, but if youre in contact with your insurance company, theres a good chance that theyll set up an inspection. Even though theyd prefer to not have to pay you to fix the roof, theyd rather deal with that smaller claim than the huge one that occurs if the roof fails. Your insurance company isnt really an adversary in this venture they just come with a lot of bureaucracy. A professional statement can help you get through a lot of it.
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Roof Insurance: What You Need To Know
Homeowners insurance may pay to replace your roof, but only if it is damaged by a covered hazard, like fire or bad weather. If a tornado rips your roof off, for instance, you can file a claim with your homeowners insurance, pay your deductible, and then your insurer will kick in the remaining costs to replace your roof.
Below are some examples of covered perils that commonly damage or destroy roofs.
Weight of rain, ice, or snow
Fire and smoke
There are some exceptions and limitations to roof coverage, depending on the severity of the damage. For example, if a few shingles on your roof had slight nicks in them after a hail storm, your home insurance company may classify it as âcosmeticâ damage â a common dwelling coverage exclusion.
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Find Out What Your Policy Covers
The easiest way to know whats covered or whats not, is to contact your insurance provider.
Some policies take the age of your roof into account at the time it is damaged. For example, if your roof is less than 10 years old, you may be covered for the full cost of repairing or replacing the damaged section of your roof at the time of the claim. If your roof is more than 10 years old, you may only be reimbursed for the depreciated value of the damaged roof. The depreciated value takes the aging and wearing of your roof into account, meaning its value has decreased prior to any damage occurring.
Some policies will only offer roof damage coverage up to the depreciated value, regardless of the age of your roof. Other policies will cover the full cost of repairing or replacing the damaged section of your roof at the time of the claim, regardless of the age of your roof. In most cases, your insurance company will send an inspector to your home to investigate and verify your claim. If the damage is determined to be from aging, wear and tear, or poor condition of your roof, it will typically be considered normal maintenance, and will not be covered under your policy.
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How To File An Insurance Claim For A Damaged Roof After A Storm
Theres a standard process you can follow to file an insurance claim for a damaged roof. In an ideal world, filing a claim would always be a smooth process, but dealing with insurance companies can sometimes be frustrating and unpleasant. In order to prepare yourself for both, heres a step-by-step guide to help you along the way.
What To Consider When Claiming For A Roof Repair With Your Insurance Company
A roof repair can be stressful because not only can repairs be costly but the overall issue can affect your day to day living. The latter means that the roof damage repair is not something that you can delay. For this reason, insurance companies can help you out with the costs. However, several things need to be considered before your insurance claim is granted.
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Roof Repair Vs Roof Replacement
When deciding on whether to repair or replace your roof, you might want to consider the following options:
- Repair if the damage is minor and localized in one spot.
- Replace the roof if the repair costs close to replacing it.
- Repair the roof if it is fairly new 10 years or less.
- Replace the roof if it is older and you plan on selling your home in the near future.
- Repair the roof if the non-matching new shingles do not affect the homes curb appeal.
Contact Your Homeowners Insurance Company
If you suspect theres any damage to your roof after a storm, its important to contact your insurance company as soon as possible.
Take detailed notes and multiple photos of all damage to the house on the ground level both interior and exterior. This documentation will be important when youre filing the claim.
Try to avoid climbing on top of your roof to inspect the damage, because you can easily hurt yourself.
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