Has your roof suffered damage from storms, hail, or wind? Depending on the scale of damage, you might need a repair or a full replacement. This is where your insurance claims come in handy.
But unfortunately, dealing with insurance companies isn’t easy. After all, they are also a business and when it comes to paying out claims, they don’t always have your best interest in mind. Hence, you’ll need to prepare yourself before filing a claim on insurance.
Go through the following steps when filing a claim on insurance for your damaged roof:
1. Review Your Insurance Policy
You’ll have to start by reviewing the details of your insurance coverage. It’ll either be an Actual Cash Value (ACV) that’s the replacement cost minus the depreciation or Replacement Cost Coverage that’s the full cost of your roof.
In some cases, insurance policies will include a deductible that’ll be paid by the insured. You’ll have to go over your policy to find these details before submitting a claim.
2. Assess the Damage
You have to check the extent of the damage caused to your property. These damages can include water leak, fallen trees on your roof, dented gutters, damage to shingles, etc. You’ll have to document these damages by taking pictures for the insurance company.
If you are not comfortable climbing up your roof, consider hiring a professional roofing company for evaluation.
3. Get an Estimate
You’ll need a written estimate of the cost for repairing/replacing your roof from a professional roofing contractor. These contractors also provide you with a public adjuster who can negotiate with your insurance company on your behalf.
You can consider multiple estimates for various contractors to make sure that you’re not being overcharged. But remember to never submit multiple estimates to your insurance company as they’ll only accept the lowest one. Submit only one cost estimate from the contractor you find most reliable.
Also, be cautious of fraudsters who drive around storm-hit areas, offering to repair damaged roofs. They’ll identify themselves as roof contractors or specialists and ask for big upfront payments. Always check for licenses and hire only a professional roofing contractor.
4. Prepare All The Documents
Documents are crucial while filling a claim on insurance. You’ll need a copy of the insurance policy, warranties, a well-written explanation with pictures and videos of the damage, and an estimate of the repair/replacement cost.
Also, remember it is not recommended to call a roofer for repairs before informing the insurance company. They usually have their approved contractors and if you go outside their network they can refuse to reimburse the cost. But if in case you have already made some repairs to secure the roof, make sure to save all the receipts.
5. Contact The Insurance Company
Call your insurance company and inform them about your damaged roof. They’ll ask you to file all the paperwork to start the claim process. After that, you can expect a visit from the insurance adjuster to inspect the damage.
They’ll talk to you and your family members, examine the damages, and conduct additional research in order to determine the amount that’ll be paid by the insurance company.
This entire process can take time depending on your insurance company and your location. You’ll have to be prompt and file a claim as soon as possible to avoid further delays.
Protect Your Home From Further Damages
The whole process of getting your insurance claim takes time and living with a damaged roof can be very dangerous. You’ll have to do something to temporarily protect your roof from further damage.
Preventing further damage is even an obligation in some insurance policies. Talk to a professional roofer who can put up a tarp until you get a full repair or replacement. Later your insurance company might also reimburse the cost of these temporary repairs if you save the receipts.