How Do Roofing Insurance Claims Work?
Your home is one of your greatest assets. As such, the integrity of your roof must not be compromised in order to fully protect you, your family, and the contents of your home.
Discovering that your roof needs to be repaired or replaced can be troubling for most homeowners. There is insurance claims paperwork to fill out, adjusters to meet, and roofing companies to evaluate, not to mention the stress of your schedule potentially being disrupted by roofing work.
Making sure you are properly reimbursed for covered damages is a part of this daunting process. Additional common questions surrounding roofing insurance claims can include:
- What type of damage is covered under my property insurance policy, and what’s not?
- Does the homeowner or roofing company handle insurance claims?
For homeowners who are unsure about how to file a claim, what types of documentation is needed, and generally what to expect, the roofing professionals with Cowtown Roofing are here to help. There are a few steps you can take as a homeowner prior to applying for home insurance claim to ensure your application will be accepted.
Find out What Your Policy Covers
When you first suspect roof damage, the easiest way to know your coverage is to contact your home insurance provider. This should be an informational call only that does not include details about what you believe has occurred to your roof. Prior to having an official damage assessment completed by a roofing company, it is in your best interest to fully understand your policy. A typical home insurance policy includes dwelling coverage, which helps protect your home’s structure, including the roof, from certain perils. Commonly covered perils include fire, wind and hail damage.
Policies often take the age of your roof under consideration. For example, you may be covered for the full cost of repairing or replacing your roof if the roof is less than 10 years old. If your roof is over 10 years old, the depreciated value of the damaged roof is an additional factor the home insurance company will weigh when they are deciding on your monetary coverage. Additionally, some home insurance policies will ignore the age of your roof. In these policies, the insurance company will either always cover the full cost or always cover a portion of the cost according to the depreciated value of the roof.
To simplify the claims process and to help you receive the correct amount of coverage for your damaged roof, take a set of “before” photos of your roof and the exterior of your property. These photos are ideally taken when you first move in to the home. After damage occurs, take a set of “after” photos that show the change in the condition of the roof. By having all of these photos on hand, you can ensure a hassle-free insurance claims process.
If you are reading this after you have moved in to your home, it is still an option to take these photos. The purpose is to show the extent of the damage that has occurred to your roof. So, any photos prior to the suspected damage occurring would still be considered relevant.
Choose a Contractor with Insurance Expertise
It is almost impossible to tell whether or not your roof is damaged, and the extent of the damage, when you are standing on the ground. Before you can apply to have work done on your roof, you will need to get an estimate from a professional roofing contractor.
Look for roofing contractors with extensive experience in providing roof estimates for insurance claims. One way to do this is to find a roofing company that has been established in your area for many years. If they have extensive experience providing roof estimates, chances are they have often provided estimates for insurance claims and have special knowledge as to what issues to highlight for the insurance company to understand your roof’s condition. You can also ask the roofing company if they employ Certified Public Adjusters who will communicate with the insurance company on your behalf.
Most roofing companies will offer a free evaluation of your roof’s current condition, but you should be wary of contingency agreements. These are agreements a roofing company may ask you to sign prior to their evaluation of your roof that state you agree to allow their company to perform the work if any damage is found. These agreements are not legally binding, but they may place you in an uncomfortable situation if you want to continue getting additional quotes and shopping around for a roofing company.
Cowtown Roofing is a team of experienced roofing professionals that have often provided roof estimates for insurance claims. Contact us today to set up a time to receive a professional evaluation of your roof’s condition.
Once you have completed the above steps, you’re ready to contact your home insurance company and begin filing your claim.
The next step in the process is to contact your home insurance company. To a home insurance company, the roof is the most important part of your house because it is the gateway to greater damage claims. If the integrity of your roof is compromised, other parts of your house may follow suit and become damaged.
The insurance claim process can be overwhelming and intimidating to many homeowners. You will need to schedule an appointment for an adjuster to come out and assess any damages. This is in many ways similar to the assessment performed by your chosen roofing company, however, the insurance company will always want to assess it themselves. The roofing company’s assessment simply lets the homeowner know whether or not a claim should be filed. At this stage, if you have selected a roofing company for this project, it is not uncommon for them to attend the appointment with the adjuster in order to evaluate the roof together.
After the adjuster assesses the damaged roof, within a few days the insurance provider will send the homeowner a summary of damages and the first coverage check. The amount of this check is generally half of the full amount to cover the repair or replacement of the damaged roof.
An insurance deductible is the amount the homeowner pays out of pocket in addition to what the insurance company is paying. You can consider this to be your “co-pay” for repairing or replacing your roof. The homeowner is legally required to pay the deductibles outlined in the insurance policy. When a property insurance claim is filed, the insurance claims adjuster will determine the amount the insurance company will pay to restore your roof to its original condition.
Generally speaking, the higher the deductible, the lower the premiums will be. The amount of the deductible varies from one case to the next, though we have seen deductibles as low as $250 or as high as $10,000.
Repairing and Replacing the Roof
Following approval of your property insurance claim, you have a set time limit to repair the covered damage. At this time, your selected roofing company will meet with the homeowner to discuss the accuracy of the insurance company’s assessment and confirm payment. An additional consideration is if there is a mortgage on the property, the first insurance check will typically require the mortgage company’s approval of the contract for the roof replacement or repair.
The first insurance check should be signed over to your chosen roofing company as either a deposit for the materials or following the completion of the roofing repair or replacement. When the work has been completed, the roofing company will then send an invoice detailing total costs and signed verification of the completed roofing project to your insurance company. The home insurance company will then send the homeowner another check to cover the remaining cost for the repair or replacement of the roof that the first check did not cover.
The insurance claims process is now complete. You, as the homeowner, will at this point have a new or repaired roof.
This process can become complicated, which is why it is important to select a roofing company you trust. Another important factor for filing an insurance claim is to find out the extent of the damage as soon as you suspect your roof has been damaged. This will help to expedite the entire process and ensure no further damage occurs to your roof that is not covered under your policy.
The roofing professionals with Cowtown Roofing are ready to assist you in this process in any way we can. From the official assessment and filling of paperwork to the completion of necessary repairs – we’ve got you covered. Our goal is to provide quality roofing services at competitive prices. Contact us today to schedule a damage assessment and receive a no-obligation quote for your roofing repair or replacement.