What Homeowners Need to Know About Insurance Claims for Roofs 2017

What Homeowners Need to Know About Insurance Claims for Roofs
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In 2012, hail and wind damage cost State Farm Insurance more than $3.9 billion. Insurance claims for roofs were a part of that exorbitant figure. Homeowners filing claims are often confused by the forms, inspections, and dealing with insurance agents.  I have helped homeowners with thousands of claims. Call me and I will help navigate you through the process. Thanks Sarah Ryterski 618-558-2675

Insurance claims for roofs can be easy or difficult. If you need a new roof or just repairs on the old one, there are important things you need to know before starting. Sometimes this can be a complex process to navigate. However, there are steps you can take to simplify the process and get the best possible results.

If your roof has been damaged in any way and you have homeowner’s insurance, there are a number of factors that will determine what is covered and how much the insurance company will actually pay. Having an experienced roofing contractor on your side who can document everything will be very beneficial.

Insurance Claims for Roofs can be Tricky

Filing insurance claims for roofs can be tricky if you do not follow every step in the process exactly. Insurance companies are not trusting entities, and they will want documentation. They will often send an insurance inspector to your home to examine your roof. If the damage is caused by a covered event or it is listed as a covered loss in the policy then it is usually simply a matter of the amount they will pay on the claim.

Common Reasons for Insurance Claims for Roofs

There are a variety of different occurrences that can cause damage to your roof. Hailstorms, high winds, and trees falling on roofs are often reasons to file an insurance claim. Shingles and other roofing products can be blown off and hailstones are known to leave obvious indentations in the roof surface.

Will Your Insurance Company Cover the Entire Cost of a New Roof?

You may be surprised to find out that some policies do not cover the entire cost of a new roof or prorate for the age of the roof. Some insurance claims for roofs are initially denied, and some are paid out on a depreciated value for the roof. You may also have to pay any deductible amount that you chose for your policy before the insurer will pay anything.

Each Insurance Policy is Different

Insurance claims for roofs vary in results because each policy is different. If you have any questions, you should contact the company that issued your policy. Policies that are more expensive may cover more than a cheaper option, and some policies do not cover certain events or damage types while others do.

What is a Deductible?  Even more important what is your deductible?

Most insurance policies include a deductible. This is the portion of a covered loss that the insured must pay. Under most circumstances, the insurance company subtracts the deductible before they pay the claim, so the insured is not required to pay anything up front.

Deductible amounts can vary considerably and it affects the insurance premium paid for the policy. The amount is determined when the policy is chosen. According to a USA.gov publication, “The higher your deductible, the more money you can save on your premiums.”

How Does the Claims Process Work?

With insurance claims for roofs, you may have to allow an adjuster to inspect the damage. In other cases, an estimate from at least one roofing contractor will need to be submitted to the insurance adjuster in your case. Once a claim is approved the insurance company will cut a check, usually for the depreciated value minus any deductible.

The initial check may be in both the name of the mortgage holder and your name, and the mortgage holder will have to sign off the check in this situation. Once the roof is repaired then a second check may be cut for any additional amounts involved in the actual repairs.

What if the Insurance Company Denies My Roof Claim?

Insurance claims are not always paid. If you believe that the insurance company is wrong and the damage should be covered by your insurance policy you can appeal the denial. Your policy is your contract with the insurance company. If your appeal is denied you can consult with an attorney to see if you have further recourse.

Having the facts and being an informed policyholder will help you navigate the process of insurance claims for roofs. I have helped homeowners with thousands of claims.  Call me and I will help navigate you through the process.  Thanks Sarah Ryterski 618-558-2675

Want to know how much your roof will cost? 618-558-2675

 

 

Tips for filing a roof claim

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Finding out that your roof needs to be replaced or repaired can be troubling for many homeowners. Dealing with insurance claims, talking to adjusters and making sure you get reimbursed for all covered damages is a daunting process. Many homeowners are simply unsure about how to file a claim, where the process can be problematic, what types of documentation they need, or what to expect.
To a home insurance company, the roof is the most important part of your house. It’s the gateway to far greater damage claims once it’s damaged. In more than 90 percent of hail or high-wind claims, there is a payout relative to the roof cover, according to the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety. Insurance companies review roofing claims very carefully and they expect you to provide proper documentation and other information in order to process your claim.
FIND OUT WHAT YOUR POLICY COVERS

The easiest way to know what’s covered or what’s not, is to contact your insurance provider.
Some policies take the age of your roof into account at the time it is damaged. For example, if your roof is less than 10 years old, you may be covered for the full cost of repairing or replacing the damaged section of your roof at the time of the claim. If your roof is more than 10 years old, you may only be reimbursed for the depreciated value of the damaged roof. The depreciated value takes the aging and wearing of your roof into account, meaning its value has decreased prior to any damage occurring.
Some policies will only offer roof damage coverage up to the depreciated value, regardless of the age of your roof. Other policies will cover the full cost of repairing or replacing the damaged section of your roof at the time of the claim, regardless of the age of your roof. In most cases, your insurance company will send an inspector to your home to investigate and verify your claim. If the damage is determined to be from aging, wear and tear, or poor condition of your roof, it will typically be considered normal maintenance, and will not be covered under your policy.
PROVIDE DOCUMENTATION FOR YOUR CLAIM

To ease the experience of the claims process and to help you receive proper settlement for your loss, take a set of “before” photos of your roof and exterior property. Update the photos whenever you have maintenance or repairs done. After damage occurs, take a set of “after” photos. Document and record the damage as well as any estimates, invoices and bills you receive. Having all of this information on file will help ensure a smooth and hassle-free claims process.
CHOOSE A CONTRACTOR WITH INSURANCE EXPERTISE

Before you can get work done on your roof that will be covered by insurance, you will need to get an estimate from a professional roofing contractor. In most cases, you can use the roofing company of your choice. Your roofing contractor should be able to help you navigate your way through the roof insurance claims process. Some roofing companies employ Certified Public Adjusters who will deal with your insurance company on your behalf. Look for contractors with extensive experience in providing roof estimates for insurance claims and helping clients navigate the process of getting their roof repair or replacement covered by their insurance company.
The most important thing to remember is that, if you suspect your roof has been damaged, you shouldn’t wait to get it inspected by a roofer. Find out the extent of the damage as soon as possible. This will help expedite the process and also help you avoid further damages that might not be covered under your policy. Tips for filing a roof claim.

Do I have hail damage? Simple steps to check for hail damage

Simple steps to check for hail damage… Free hail checks (618)558-2675 Ryterski

Identifying hail damage on your belongings, such as patio furniture or your car, is relatively straightforward. The round dings in metal are obvious signs of hail damage. However, determining whether your roof has sustained damage from a hailstorm may be a little more difficult. It’s important to keep your roof in top condition to avoid structural deterioration that may cause leaks. Many insurance companies will consider paying for a roof that has been damaged by hail, but it must be correctly assessed. Insurance adjusters will require the opinion of a professional roofing contractor before they will consent to the work being done, but you can also check for hail damage yourself before calling a roofer by following these tips.

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1
Search for damage on the metal. Check metal roof vents, flashing or metal valleys on the roof to see if there are any dents. Soft metal will show dents, and also indicate the size of the hail.

2**********CAUTION*****Do not get on the roof unless you are a licensed roofer******
Check the ridge cap of the roof for dents. This area of the roof will receive the most damage from hail since it is flat and will take a direct hit in a storm.
Look at the shingles. Check the whole shingle, as well as the edges, for signs of damage.

3
Identify the types of damage caused by hail. The 3 major signs of hail damage include bruising, cracking and granules missing from asphalt.
Check for missing pieces in the asphalt of the roof. Look for areas on the shingle that have exposed, black substrate. This means the granules of the asphalt have been compromised or knocked off by something.
Search for bruising in the shingles. Dents from hail are not always completely visible. Run your hand over the shingle to feel for small dimples in the surface. Press 1 of the dimples to see if it has any give. If it does, this is a sign that the shingle has begun some deterioration.
Look for cracking in the shingle. Large hail can make a circular crack if the hail hits it hard enough.

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Tips
Hail that is less than 1 inch (2.54 cm) in circumference will be more difficult to identify. Hail that is 1 to 2 inches (2.54 to 5.1 cm) will be visible on the soft metal and most likely on the singles themselves, and 2-inch (5.1 cm) hail will be visible throughout the roof.
Your insurance company will require an inspection of your roof by their adjuster. A contractor may claim there is hail damage to your roof, and in reality he may not be familiar with what hail damage looks like, or may just be trying to get a job to make money.