Hail is one of the major causes of roof damage in the US. From 2013 to 2015, Texas recorded the highest number of hail damage claims with 394,572 cases.
If you're a victim of hail damage, the last thing you want is spending heftily to replace your roof. If you have roof repair insurance, you need to know how to file a claim. Keep in mind that your policy won't cover repairs or replacements due to normal wear and tear.
Most of the policies cover damages caused by hail, fire, vandalism, high wind, tornadoes, and hurricanes. This post will show you how to file an insurance claim easily.
Read on to learn more.
It helps to contact your insurance provider or agent to know what's covered. Insurance companies take different approaches when handling insurance claims.
For example, some will take into account the age of your roof. In this case, your policy will cover the full cost of repair or replacement if the roof is less than ten years old. However, if the roof is more than ten years old, you'll only be compensated for the depreciated value.
Depreciated value consists of the wearing and aging that have occurred over time prior to the damage.
Some plans will offer coverage up to the depreciated value of the roof, regardless of its age. Others will only cover the damaged part of the roof at the time of the claim. Damages that occur due to water damage may need an additional policy.
The best way to know if your damage is covered is to read the policy and talk to your roof repair insurance agent.
Once the disaster that caused the damage is over, inspect the condition of the roof. It's wise to hire a roofing contractor to do this for you. Most will give you a professional inspection report that you can file with the claim.
Your roof can be intact from the outside, but there can be significant damage on the inside. A trained expert can help to detect such hidden damages. Keep in mind that some policies have time limits for filing claims.
As such, you can't file a claim for damage that you hadn't noticed after the time limit elapses. After the disaster calms and it's safe, you can proceed with having the inspection done. A professional roofer will identify areas that require immediate repair and give you estimates.
Taking pictures is also an ideal way of documenting the damage. Typically, the pictures supplement the roof inspection report. It will also be great if you leave this task to an experienced roofer. They'll offer a written explanation alongside each picture.
This makes it easy to understand the repairs you need and the possible costs. In some cases, the damage may not be significant enough to warrant filing a roof repair insurance claim.
In some cases, your insurance company may need to know about the damage even if you work with a preferred contractor. This helps to prevent possible disputes if your deal goes south.
Even after maintenance has been done, take photos of the roof. Label the pictures with the date and time.
At this point, you have all the relevant details and paperwork to initiate the claim process. Contact your insurance company and follow their claims procedure. If you have questions, let them walk you through the process.
They will give you a claim reference number and an agent that will work with you. Be sure to document all the paperwork, bills, receipts, and estimates you receive.
You don't want to wait too long to file the claim. Your insurance policy usually entails everything you need to know about filing claims and deadlines.
If the disaster is widespread, your insurer will handle claims according to urgency. Typically, those with extensive damage will be given priority. You'll be given a possible date when the agent will visit your home.
When the agent visits your home, they may want to conduct a separate inspection. They're likely to reject the claim if the damage is due to normal wear and tear.
Submit the inspection report and repair estimates to the claims adjuster. You'll need to wait until your claim is approved to proceed with repairs or replacement.
After your insurer reviews the roof repair insurance claim, they can reject or approve it. Even if they approve it, you may feel the given amount is too low. You can appeal the amount in court if you feel it's necessary.
If you're content with the given amount, you can then find a roofing contractor. Take the time to review and interview different contractors. Talk to them about the damage and possible repair options they suggest.
Ask for references if necessary. Remember to work with licensed and insured roofers only. There are always fly by night roofing companies that usually approach homeowners during disasters with irresistible offers. Beware of such companies and always stay vigilant.
Ask for roofing estimates from different companies and compare them. Some may offer free inspections before giving you an estimate.
Be sure to talk to them about the amount your insurance company has offered for the job. Also, it helps to choose a contractor with insurance expertise.
Some contractors have in-house claim adjusters to help with the roof damage.
Handling a roof claim doesn't need to be a difficult task. The best way is to work with a professional roofing contractor. Bear in mind that some insurers may not approve your claim if a professional roofer did not do the inspection.
At Triumph Roofing and Construction, we have experts to help you through the claim process. We'll take the "before" photos along with pictures of the damage to make sure the process goes smoothly.
Our experts will also help you complete all the necessary paperwork. After the claim approval, we'll work on your repair or replacement job.
Do you have any questions about roof repair insurance claims? Be sure to reach out to us for professional help.