Group poll: What is the worst part of a roof replacement?
Is it the disruption? The worry? The sheer amount of choices?
If you are like most homeowners, your answer is probably “the cost.” There’s no two ways around it. Roof replacements? They are expensive. But you don’t have to shoulder the costs on your own.
If you have homeowner’s insurance, you may be able to get your insurance company to cover the cost.
In this blog post, we’ll walk you through:
How to get insurance to pay for a roof replacement
What insurance typically won’t cover
Signs you should contact your insurance company
Common signs of roof damage
Ready to file your roof insurance claim? Keep reading to find out how!
10 Steps to Get Insurance to Pay for a Roof Replacement
Filing an insurance claim through your homeowner’s insurance might seem complicated, but it doesn’t have to be! Follow these simple steps to file a roof damage insurance claim.
1) Review Your Insurance Policy ✅
The first step in the process is to review your homeowner’s insurance policy carefully. Understand the terms, conditions, and coverage limits. Pay close attention to any sections related to roof damage and replacement. Familiarize yourself with your deductible and the specific circumstances under which your insurance will cover roof damage.
2) Document the Damage 📸
If you suspect your roof has sustained damage that may be covered by insurance, start by documenting the damage. Take clear photographs and videos from multiple angles. This visual evidence will be essential when filing a claim.
3) Contact a Roofing Professional ☎️
Before reaching out to your insurance company, it’s crucial to have a professional roofing contractor inspect your roof. They can provide an expert assessment of the damage, recommend necessary repairs or a full replacement, and provide you with a detailed estimate. Having a professional evaluation will strengthen your claim.
4) File a Claim 📁
Once you have sufficient documentation and a professional assessment, it’s time to contact your insurance company to file a claim. Reach out to your insurance agent or the claims department and provide them with all the information they need, including photos, videos, and the roofing contractor’s estimate.
5) Meet with the Adjuster 🤝
Your insurance company will assign an adjuster to assess the damage in person. Be sure to meet with the adjuster and share your roofing contractor’s estimate and findings. Be present during the inspection to answer any questions and provide additional context.
6) Review the Settlement Offer 💰
After the adjuster’s evaluation, your insurance company will provide you with a settlement offer. Carefully review the offer to ensure it covers all necessary repairs or replacement costs. If you have any concerns or discrepancies, discuss them with your insurance company.
7) Negotiate if Necessary 🗣️
If the initial settlement offer does not fully cover the cost of your roof replacement, don’t hesitate to negotiate with your insurance company. Provide additional evidence and documentation to support your case. Many homeowners successfully negotiate improved settlements.
8) Get Approval in Writing 📝
Once you’re satisfied with the settlement offer, make sure to get the approval in writing. This written agreement should outline the scope of work, estimated costs, and the amount your insurance will pay.
9) Begin the Roof Replacement 👷♀️
With your insurance claim approved, you can now proceed with the roof replacement. Hire a reputable roofing contractor and ensure they follow all local building codes and regulations. Keep all receipts and documentation related to the project for your records.
10) Pay Your Deductible 💵
Remember that you’ll still need to pay your deductible as per your insurance policy. Ensure that you cover this cost before the work begins.
What Insurance Typically Won’t Cover
While homeowner’s insurance can be a lifesaver when it comes to roof damage, it’s essential to be aware of what it typically won’t cover:
Normal Wear and Tear: Insurance typically doesn’t cover roof damage resulting from normal wear and tear, as roofs have a limited lifespan, and their deterioration over time is considered a homeowner’s responsibility.
Neglect: If you fail to properly maintain your roof or address issues promptly, insurance may deny your claim. Regular inspections and maintenance are essential to prevent this.
Cosmetic Damage: Insurance is more likely to cover damage that affects the functionality of your roof, such as leaks, rather than cosmetic issues like fading paint or minor dents.
Uncovered Perils: Certain perils, such as earthquakes and floods, are often not covered by standard homeowner’s insurance policies. If your roof damage results from these events, you may need additional coverage.
Roof Overdue for Replacement: If your roof was already in poor condition and overdue for replacement before the damage occurred, your insurance company may limit coverage or deny the claim altogether.
When Should You Contact Your Insurance Company
Knowing when to contact your insurance company about potential roof damage is crucial. Here are some signs that should prompt you to get in touch with them:
Storm Damage: After a severe storm with hail, high winds, or heavy rain, you should inspect your roof for damage. Missing or damaged shingles, dents, or cracks are all red flags.
Water Leaks: If you notice water stains on your ceiling or walls, it’s a clear sign that your roof may be leaking. Prompt action is essential to prevent further damage.
Granule Loss: If you find an excessive amount of granules in your gutters or downspouts, it may indicate that your shingles are deteriorating. This can lead to roof damage and should be addressed.
Sagging or Drooping Roof: A sagging or drooping roof is a severe issue that requires immediate attention. Contact your insurance company and a roofing professional as soon as possible.
Signs of Animal Damage: Damage caused by pests, such as raccoons or squirrels, may not be covered by insurance, but it’s still essential to address and prevent further damage to your roof.
Hail Damage: Hail can cause significant damage to your roof, including dents and cracks in shingles. If you experience a hailstorm, check your roof for damage.
8 Common Signs of Roof Damage
To help you identify potential roof damage before it becomes a significant issue, here are some common signs to watch for:
1) Missing or Damaged Shingles
Missing or damaged shingles are a clear indication of roof damage. They expose your roof to further harm from the elements.
2) Curling or Buckling Shingles
Shingles that curl or buckle can allow water to seep underneath, leading to leaks and rot.
3) Cracked or Split Shingles
Cracks or splits in shingles can compromise their effectiveness in protecting your home.
4) Leaks and Water Stains
Water stains on your ceilings or walls are a telltale sign of roof leaks. Investigate these issues promptly to prevent further damage.
5) Algae or Moss Growth
Algae or moss growth on your roof can indicate moisture retention, which can deteriorate shingles and lead to roof damage.
6) Deteriorated Flashing
Damaged or deteriorated flashing around chimneys, vents, and skylights can lead to water infiltration.
7) Granule Loss
Excessive granule loss from shingles can reduce their durability and effectiveness.
8) Sagging Roof Deck
A sagging or bowed roof deck may indicate structural damage and should be addressed immediately.
Work With a Reputable Roofing Company
By recognizing the signs of roof damage and knowing when to contact your insurance company, you can take proactive steps to protect your home and ensure that your roof replacement is covered when it’s needed most. Remember that working with a qualified roofing contractor is crucial to navigating the insurance process successfully and restoring the integrity of your roof.
At Highroad Roofing, we’re proud to be experts in our field, offering you guidance as you navigate a homeowners insurance claim with your own vision for your roof. When you are ready to make a change, contact our knowledgeable team to set up an appointment!