How to File an Insurance Claim for Roof Repair the Right Way
Filing an insurance claim for roof repair can seem intimidating and like something you might feel a bit unprepared for. You may have heard stories of how tricky insurance adjusters can be with technicalities to deny your claim. It can happen quite easily too unless you report the damage correctly. That’s even if your policy covers the damage at all. Many times, it’s best to move forward with just the repairs and forgo risking your insurance coverage. A professional roofer, particularly with experience in assessing storm damage will be able to survey the condition of your roof and give you a better idea as to whether your insurance company will be willing to pay for repairs. Often times, these assessments are a free no obligatory service.
These tips will help you get coverage for as much damage as possible.
Document What Caused Your Roof Damage
Often, roof damage occurs during a storm. If possible, make sure to take photos and write down details of when the storm occurred. The most helpful photos will show the damage, for example dangling, crinkled shingles, or any areas where shingles might be missing. Leak spots on the ceiling inside of your home. Take pictures of any hail pieces using for example coins, sport balls, tape measures for size perspective. Also, take pictures of any trees that have fallen or damage that occurred to your car or siding. It also might be a good idea to check in with neighbors to see if you can photograph any damage that occurred to their homes.
Always make sure to take photos with time and date documented on them. This helps back your case that the storm happened on a certain day. Also notate any pertaining details supported by local weather service reports. This is the sort of stuff that makes it difficult for the insurance company to refute. In fact, just including it in your claim gives them a reason to provide more accurate rates.
Its also a good idea if you can remember, to take a few pictures while a storm is occurring, even if you don’t notice damage right away. If you happen to spot a leak later, you have a better chance of backing your claim.
Look to See What Roof Damage Your Insurance Policy Covers
Not all homeowners insurance policies are created equal. What damage does yours cover in the event of a storm? You may have to dig a bit further 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 15-20 years or longer, so there’s a pretty good chance you may 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.
Work with a Professional Expert to Put Together an Estimate
Getting in touch with a reputable roofing company prior to submitting your insurance claim for repair is of the utmost importance so that you actually understand what costs are needed to repair any 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 working with a reputable company. Do your research. Check out the local BBB. Look online for reviews. Its always important to do your due diligence. In Texas, many people are not aware that there is zero licensure required to complete roofing projects. As a result, there are all kinds of unreliable roofing companies out there who may be looking to make a quick buck out of your situation.
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:
- How much of your deductible
- What is the 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 its covered by your policy. But it’s critical 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 denied claim from your insurance company or receiving an unfair low settlement offer, leaves homeowners feeling intimidated and scared. The reality is however, is that you don’t have to accept it.
Contact the Texas Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (TAPIA) 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 minimize your risks and greatly increase your chances when filing an insurance claim for roof repair by hiring Rebuild Texas Roofing and Windows for your initial damage assessment. We know all about the roof insurance claims process and even have our very own Public Adjuster in house who can fight to get you what you rightfully deserve. Contact us today at 888-314-5091 or schedule an inspection by clicking here. We are A+ rated with the BBB and have thousands of reviews from satisfied homeowners here in the area.