Whether it’s hail, snow, storms, or the inevitable wear and tear, your roof will eventually start showing signs of damage. In sunny places, many homes and commercial spaces will often have their roofs exposed to dry rot or damage from hurricanes, and when the cracks do start appearing, they need to act fast to get it repaired.
Sure, a lot of us have insurance, but for new homeowners and some startups, the proper procedure for filing an insurance claim for their roof damage is not exactly something they’re familiar with. We’re here to tell you, though, that roofing damage and filing proper insurance claims are essential skills that new business owners and first-time homeowners should have in their toolbox.
You could just call up an insurance adjuster and have them take care of it for you, but if you want to be paid fairly and be given an appropriate claim, you need to know the proper way of doing things. We asked some expert roofing contractors about what both homeowners and commercial spaces should do when filing an insurance claim for their damaged roofs.
Get Your Local Roofer to Do the Initial Assessment
Perhaps the first and most crucial part of getting a fair and appropriate insurance claim is finding out the extent of damage your roof has. To get the most accurate assessment possible, find a local roofer that is reputable and trustworthy.
The roofer’s initial assessment will go a long way to helping the insurance adjusters figure out exactly how much of the damage they are liable for. Reputable and highly skilled roofers will always go through your roof with a fine-tooth comb. They can check the eave overhangs, look for dry rot both on the surface of the roof and underneath loose shingles, and more.
If damage does exist, ask your roofer to document every single crack, rot, moss patch, loose shingle, displaced screw, and any other type of damage your roof has received. This is crucial to getting the most accurate assessment possible and will help your insurance company to get a clear and complete picture of how much damage is covered by your policy.
Without documentation, you’ll have to rely on your insurance adjuster to make a fair assessment, and sure, most adjusters are trustworthy as well. Still, it’s best to ask your roofer to do this since they’ll be much more aware of the damage and will recognize subtle areas that an adjuster might miss.
A Note about Deductibles
Most homeowners’ roofing insurance policies will have deductibles. These are a set amount of cash that homeowners will have to pay on their own. Insurance companies will usually only cover amounts above your deductible.
For example, if your roof’s damage will require $500 in repairs and your deductible amount is set at $1,000, then the insurance company won’t reimburse you. Conversely, if your roof’s damage requires, say, $5,000, then the homeowner only has to pay $1,000 while the insurance company covers the rest (or whatever they’re liable for under your policy).