Replacing a roof can be a costly and exasperating process, but if a roof is storm damaged by hail, high winds or water and has failed to stand the test of time, there is usually no option other than repair and replacement, which often means deciphering exactly what is covered under a homeowner’s insurance policy and how the claim process works.
Insurance payments for roof replacement usually depend on the type of roof covering that has been used, such as composition shingles, tiles, wood, slate, metal, and other materials, along with the type of damage done.
No matter the type of roof covering materials or parts of a roof that have been damaged, an insurance company will scrutinize a claim for roof replacement and expect the policy holder to provide extensive documentation, before and after photographs, and other information to justify a claim for processing.
So, if you want to know the particulars of whether your insurance will pay for your roof replacement, you’ll need to thoroughly review your policy as to what you need to do ahead of time to make a legitimate claim.
Review Your Policy Coverage
Reviewing your policy coverage will allow you to determine what coverage entails for roof replacement. Usually a roof that is newer (10 years or less) is fully covered for repair or replacement on sections of the roof that have been damaged.
Beyond the 10 Year Mark
When a roof is beyond the 10 year mark, a homeowner will usually receive reimbursement on the diminishing or depreciated value of the roof. Depreciated value simply means that the insurance company evaluates a roof by its age and the wear and tear it has experienced. The insurance carrier then places a decreased value on a roof before damage has taken place.
Other insurance policies only offer coverage on the depreciated value of the roof, whether it is newer or older, while some policies offer full repair or replacement costs for the damaged areas in spite of its age.
Inspection and Prompt Reporting
Regardless of the situation with a damaged roof and the circumstances surrounding it, most insurance companies dispatch an inspector to examine and confirm a claim. If the inspector determines that the damage has occurred because of normal aging, deteriorating conditions or everyday wear and tear, such findings are usually interpreted as normal maintenance and are not covered under a home policy.
If a roofing claim is determined to be legitimate and an inspection evaluation will likely prove it so, it is imperative to arrange an inspection as soon as the damage has been documented. Payment can be accelerated and payment issued when a claim is promptly reported.
An insurance company may also require estimates from licensed roofing contractors for legitimate repair and replacement work, or they may have their own estimators to determine costs. It is imperative to obtain specific and detailed written estimates as well as proof that a roofer is licensed and insured.
Another plus in the estimate and claim process is finding a contractor that is specifically experienced in giving estimates for insurance claims and is familiar with helping a homeowner through the maze of red-tape to get a replacement claim approved. All of this information is imperative in accelerating the claim process.
An insurance company might also require that certain roofing materials meet state code specification for repair and replacement of a roof. Shingles, nails, tiles and other materials must be made to tolerate wind, hail and natural disaster situations. Homeowners seeking repair must follow these material specifications through acquiring proof of a state compliance certificate that indicates that proper repair has been made. Once that aspect as been verified, an insurance payment can be made.
Know the Specifics
Knowing the specifics of a homeowner policy in relationship to roof replacement is the most important aspect in determining how to go about filing a claim. Documentation of actual damage is another aspect that will help to speed up processing of a claim as is employing a licensed roofing contractor that is knowledgeable in insurance claims.
If your roof has been damaged and is protected by a homeowner’s policy and you are still unsure of the claim process, complete the online contact form and an expert in roof repair and replacement will get back to you with the information you need to make a legitimate and productive claim.