Many people have had a poor experience with their insurance, whether it’s vehicle or homeowners insurance. However, insurance is a necessity to cover unexpected damage. Filing an insurance claim often seems more challenging than necessary, especially when starting a claim for your roof.
Understanding the steps can be challenging if you’ve never had to file an insurance claim for roof damage. You’ve come to the right place if you don’t know how to deal with insurance companies or have never filed a claim. Below is a step-by-step guide to filling an insurance claim for your damaged roof to ensure you can get coverage for your repairs.
Assess Roof Damage and Document Any Damage
The first step in starting an insurance claim for your roof is to assess the damage. There are many reasons your roof can become damaged, including the following:
- Severe weather
- High winds
- Heavy rain
- Hail damage
- Fallen trees or debris
- Storm damage
- Natural disasters
Some of the damage to your roof can be seen from inside your home or the ground, such as downed trees, water stains or missing shingles. Other types of damage may be less obvious and require a more detailed assessment, and you may need a ladder to see the entirety of the roof. Some types of damage to keep an eye out for include:
- Cracked, dented or curled shingles.
- Debris on your roof.
- Missing shingles.
- Damaged gutters.
- Internal water damage.
Once you’ve assessed the damage, you’ll want to document every detail. Documenting the damage gives you proof when you’re filing a claim with your insurance agent. The best way to document roof damage is to take pictures or videos. You can also include records of the maintenance you’ve done on your roof to show your insurance company you’ve taken care of your roof and that the damage to your roof isn’t your fault.
Contact Your Insurer to Get the Ball Rolling
The next step of the roof insurance claim process is to contact your insurance company. You’ll want to explain your current situation and gather information about the procedures or requirements to begin filing a claim.
Contacting your insurance company first can help you save time when it’s time to file a claim, especially if you only have partial coverage or are only covered for the actual cash value (ACV) of your repair. Most states only offer two types of roofing coverage, so you’ll want to contact your insurer to ensure you know what type of coverage you have:
- Repair coverage: This type of coverage has a high deductible and premium but offers some of the best protection, allowing you to receive full coverage for your roof repairs when an eligible event causes damage to your roof.
- ACV: This type of coverage will consider your roof’s age and the depreciation value of your home before determining how much of the cost of your roof repair is paid out.
With the right roofing company, you can negotiate more coverage from your insurance company. For example, if your insurance only wants to replace a few shingles, the right roofing company can tell your insurance provider that the manufacturer guidelines require a complete replacement, especially if a shingle is discontinued, helping you get the most coverage for your roof repair.
Find a Roofing Company
The next step is to meet a local roofing company to help you. A roofing company can help do an inspection so they can report the damage. These companies can also give you recommendations that you can take to your insurance company. You’ll want to find a high-quality roofing company to ensure you’re getting the best service. Things you should look for in a roofing company include:
- Reputation: Reputation says a lot about the quality of the company. You’ll want to ask those you know and others around town to get a good idea of the best roofing companies in your area.
- Experience: You’ll want to look for a roofing company with plenty of industry experience, ensuring you’re working with contractors with the knowledge and expertise to handle your project.
- Transparency: Finding a company that is upfront about pricing can give you more confidence. Most contractors will offer a free quote or estimate, so you’ll want to find a contractor who’s transparent about their pricing from the beginning.
- Punctuality: It can be challenging to work with a company that’s hard to contact. Your roof is essential to your home safety, so you must find a contractor who doesn’t waste time and is prompt and professional.
- Ratings: Apart from asking around town, you can look online for information about roofing companies. You should look for online reviews, ratings and testimonials to gauge a company’s quality.
- Respect: Many first-time homebuyers and owners have worked with contractors who don’t treat them with the respect they deserve. You’ll want to look for a roofing company with your best interests at heart that will provide the information you need to file a claim and fix your roof correctly the first time.
Once you find a roofing company and have an estimate, you’ll want to file your insurance claim and meet with an insurance adjuster. Your roofing company can help you facilitate the conversation with your adjuster. Your insurance adjuster will assess the damage themselves so they can validate your claim. Ensure you provide the adjuster with all the evidence you’ve collected, including the photos you’ve taken, your maintenance history and the recommendations from your roofing company.
Settle Your Claim
The last step is to settle your claim. Once your claim is approved, the settlement quote should help cover most or all of the roof repair costs. You can schedule your roof repair with your preferred company so you can get started on fixing the damage.
However, it’s essential to remember that claim processing times can be longer than expected since your adjuster is likely working through many different claims simultaneously. Until your repair can start, you can place a tarp over the affected area to prevent the damage from getting worse and prevent water from entering your home.
Utilize a Professional and Expert Roofing Company
Working with a professional roofing company is essential to get the most out of your insurance claim. If you’re a homeowner in Illinois or Indiana and have experienced roofing damage, Total Roofing and Construction can help. We are an experienced roofing company that partners with the top roofing suppliers, allowing up to offer high-quality roof repair services.
We offer extensive roof repair services, ensuring you’re covered when your roof is damaged from storms, falling trees, fires and other events. You can contact us for a free estimate or schedule an appointment today!