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Get Insurance to Pay for Your Roof: Secrets From the Pros
Roof Insurance Claims
No one likes to be faced with the prospect of replacing their roof. It’s no secret that insurance companies can be difficult to work with and there are less than trustworthy contractors out there. In this article, we are going to let you in on all the secrets from the pros and answer all your frequently asked questions about roof insurance, insurance claims, and any other insurance roof replacement questions you may have.
Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Roof Replacement?
Yes, your homeowners insurance should cover an insurance claim for roof damage. Unless there is an exclusion in your homeowners insurance policy for wind, hail, or other storm damage, then you will be able to submit a hail, wind, or storm damage insurance claim.
The keyword here however is damage. Your homeowners insurance policy may not cover your roof replacement due to normal wear and tear or lack of maintenance. This is why it’s extremely important to have your roof inspected every year, especially after a major storm. If you are due for your annual roof inspection, schedule your inspection below!
Here are some of the most frequently asked insurance roof replacement questions:
How much does a roof replacement cost?
The average Colorado deductible for a roof replacement is around $2,500, however, the out-of-pocket cost for roof replacement is between $15,000 and $20,000. Most homes in Colorado are likely to get hit by hail at least once every five years, so it’s important to make sure you can afford your deductible every year.
What does the insurance company look for?
When you file a homeowners insurance claim for roof damage, the insurance company will typically send out an adjuster to assess the roof condition. They will be looking for roof damage due to wind, hail, or other storm-related weather conditions. Some of the types of storm damage the insurance adjuster will look for are accelerated shingle and granule loss, curling or cracked shingles, exposed underlayment, or dark streaks that indicate algae growth.
Will filing a homeowner insurance claim for roof damage increase my rates?
Generally speaking, no. Your rates will not increase if you file a claim for hail, wind, or other roof damage. Unfortunately, most insurance companies increase rates based if your area code was impacted by the storm.
Do I need to get my roof inspected before buying or selling?
It’s always good practice to have your roof inspected before buying or selling a home. If you are buying a home and there is pre-existing damage due to a storm, your insurance company may not cover your roof replacement.
On the contrary, if you’re selling your home it’s beneficial to have a completed report for prospective buyers to review for peace of mind. Click below for your free Colorado digital roof analysis.
How to Get Homeowners Insurance to Pay for a Roof Replacement
It’s no secret that the last thing insurance companies want to do is pay out a claim. For this reason alone, it is crucial that you have a professional roof inspection before renewing a contract or signing a new one. Insurance adjusters are not roofing experts, so why should you rely on a non-expert to assess your damage and settlement? You definitely want a trusted specialist on your side. Here are a few other tips to help you through your roof insurance claim.
Make sure you are going through a licensed, local roofing contractor.
It’s important to make sure that you choose a contractor that is both local and licensed. You will also want to make sure that they have proper insurance that covers workman's compensation. If they don’t, and someone gets hurt while replacing the roof it is the homeowner who may ultimately be responsible.
You’ll also want to make sure that their insurance includes general liability. If something goes wrong during your roof replacement, for example, an AC line gets punctured and floods your home, the repair costs will ultimately be on you. Or if there is an issue with your new roof a couple of years down the road, their insurance policy should cover faulty workmanship. Going through a licensed and properly insured contractor is one of the most important things you can do to protect yourself and your home when replacing your roofing system. Don’t try to cut corners or save costs by going through someone cheaper who is not properly licensed or insured.
If your contractor offers to cover your deductible for you, run away, literally.
According to homeowner deductible laws, roofers are not allowed to cover deductible costs for their client. Doing so or acceptance of this can result in a misdemeanor charge for the homeowner. That’s right, not the contractor, but you, the homeowner.
Never go through an insurance preferred contractor.
A lot of insurance preferred contractors have lower profit margins and as a result of this, they will sometimes try to cut expenses by using cheaper materials or labor.
Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Wind Damage?
Yes, your homeowners insurance will cover wind damage. Although there are many different types of wind damage and it’s sometimes hard to tell whether the damage is substantial or minor, it’s always best to have it checked out right away. Sometimes damage that may initially be minor can lead to more serious issues down the road like corrosion or water infiltration.
When to File a Hail Damage Roof Insurance Claim.
Depending on the kind of roofing materials used on your home, hail damage to roofs in Colorado can range from minor cosmetic issues to serious problems that can affect the structural integrity of your home. Hail as small as 1.00” can cause damage to most standard roofs. It’s better to have your roof inspected as soon as possible after a hail storm and have the damage assessed by a local, trusted roofing professional.
Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Roof Leaks?
Generally speaking, your homeowners insurance should cover roof leaks, unless there is an exclusion written into your policy for hail, wind, or other storm damage. If you think you have a leaking roof, it’s important to have it inspected right away as leaks can lead to more serious issues. It’s also important to regularly clean and check your gutters as they can be a cause of roof leaks as well, and most insurance companies will not cover damage due to normal wear and tear or lack of maintenance.
Roof Insurance Claim Process
The first step will be to reach out to a local, licensed contractor. You’ll want to do your research and read their reviews, ask for references, and verify they’re properly insured and licensed. Google Reviews, NextDoor, and Angie’s List are all great places to start when verifying reviews.
Start The Claim
Once you’ve decided on a contractor to complete the work, you’ll want to reach out to your insurance company to begin the claim process. Make sure you’re contracted with your contractor prior to contacting the insurance company and let your contractor know when the insurance adjuster is coming out so they can meet them at the property.
When the adjuster comes out, he will evaluate the damage, write a scope of work, and write the initial damage report. It’s important that your contractor is present when this takes place. Two sets of eyes is always better than one!
Many times the insurance company will miss some of the damage, whether to the roof, or possibly your siding or gutters. When the insurance company sends its initial scope of work over to be reviewed by your contractor, your contractor should then advocate on your behalf to make sure that all the damage gets covered in your claim, not just some.
Finalize Scope Of Work
It’s important that the contractor doesn’t begin working until they have agreed to the whole scope of work provided by the insurance company. Once an agreement is reached, you can start choosing colors and materials for your new roof and the build can begin!
Invoice The Insurance
Once the work is completed, the contractor should invoice the company on your behalf. It’s important that you let your contractor handle sending over the invoice. Contractors will send in the final invoice with all cost and permitting cost which most of the time the homeowner or policyholder does not know.
Filing a homeowners insurance claim for roof damage
Insurance adjusters are not roofing experts, so why should you rely on a non-expert to assess your damage and settlement? You definitely want a trusted specialist on your side.
The insurance company's adjuster will perform the same roof inspection but may come up with very different results for the cause of damages and/or the cost to repair or replace your roof. Not only will an experienced roofing contractor thoroughly inspect the roof and analyze the damage, but he or she will also present the findings to the adjuster so that they know the scope of work that is required and offer a more accurate settlement to you.