Filing an insurance claim for roof repair can be nerve-wracking. You’ve likely heard the stories of how tricky insurance adjusters can be with technicalities to deny your entire claim. It can happen quite easily too unless you report the damage correctly. That’s if your policy covers the damage at all. Sometimes, it’s best to eat the repairs and forgo risking your insurance coverage. A professional roofer will be able to assess the condition of your roof and give you a better idea as to whether your insurance company will willingly pay for repairs.
These tips will help you get coverage for as much damage as possible.
Tip #1: Document What Caused Your Roof Damage
Many times, roof damage occurs during a storm. If possible, take photos or notes of when the storm occurred. The best photos to take will show the damage, such as hanging, missing or rumpled shingles, or wet spots on the ceiling inside your home. Take pictures of hail stones next to coins or tape measures. Also, take pics of fallen trees or damage to your car or siding. You can also ask neighbors for permission to photograph damage to their homes.
It’s best if you can take photos with time and date stamps on them. This helps prove the storm happened on a certain day, facts supported by local weather service reports. It’s the type of evidence insurance companies have a hard time refuting. In fact, just including it in your claim gives them a reason to provide more accurate rates.
It can be a good idea to take a few shots during storms even if you don’t notice damage right away. If a leak appears later, you have a better chance of substantiating your claim.
Tip #2: Determine What Roof Damage Your Insurance Policy Covers
All homeowners insurance policies aren’t created equal. What damage does yours cover? You’ll have to read it to find out. Unfortunately, insurance coverage isn’t the same as a maintenance plan. You might need a new roof without suffering a catastrophic event. Quality shingles will last 30 years or longer, so there’s a good chance you’ll have damage at some point. Whether it’s enough to justify a whole-roof replacement – or even justify filing a claim – depends on the situation.
The most important thing to remember is that neglecting roof maintenance may result in zero coverage, even when disaster strikes. This is the number one way insurance companies avoid paying for repairs. If you have ignored cracked, curling shingles, missing soffit, damaged underlayment or rusting gutters, the insurance company might say poor maintenance put your roof at risk. Using a professional company can help in this situation too, as the pros can weigh in on the damages other homes in your neighborhood experienced.
Tip #3: Hire a Contractor to Provide a Roof Repair Estimate
Contacting a reputable roofing company before turning in your insurance claim for roof repair is essential, as you’ll understand the cost necessary to repair the damages. Some insurance companies have a history of undercutting consumers, providing just enough funds to replace your roof with the poorest quality materials. Having an estimate in-hand may expedite the claims process by discouraging unreasonable restrictions.
After a large storm, your area might be crawling with amateur roofing companies – or worse, scam artists. Be sure you are simply requesting an estimate and not entering a contract. Read the fine print before you sign any documents.
Tip #4: Consider Whether You Should File an Insurance Claim for Repair
The cost for a total roof replacement could top $20,000, but not all roofing repairs are so expensive. A small $3,000 partial replacement or patch job might not be worth filing a claim. There are a few considerations:
- The amount of your deductible
- Total cost of repairs
- Whether you’ve filed claims before
In theory, you should be able to file a claim whenever your home needs repairs, as long as your policy covers them. But it’s important not to overdo the claims or it may put up red flags for your insurance provider. Worse, your claims history goes in a national database and new insurance companies might refuse to take you on or could charge you an outlandish rate. Experts commonly suggest paying out of pocket for repairs until they reach the $5,000 mark.
When Your Insurance Company Denies Your Insurance Claim for Roof Repair
Receiving a denial from an insurance company or receiving a ridiculously low settlement offer, leaves homeowners feeling shocked and afraid. The good news is you don’t have to accept it.
Contact the Georgia Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (GAPIA) to find a professional to help you appeal the decision. Alternatively, you can hire a lawyer. In both cases, the fees for their work come out of a settlement, so you shouldn’t need to pay them any money upfront.
You can also reduce your risks when filing an insurance claim for roof repair by hiring Hopewell Roofing and Restoration for your initial damage assessment. We know all about the roof insurance claim process. Contact us today at 678-771-5372.