The Complete Roof Insurance Claim Process: A Step-by-Step Guide for Homeowners

Roof Insurance Claim

Experiencing unexpected roof damage can be a daunting and stressful ordeal for homeowners. Whether it’s due to severe weather conditions, fallen trees, or debris, roof damage can have a significant impact on your mental and financial well-being. However, there is hope! By understanding the roof insurance claim process and seeking assistance from an independent roofer, you can gain confidence in dealing with your insurance company and ensure that you receive the repairs or replacements you rightfully deserve. In this blog post, we will guide you through the entire process, highlighting key details you need to be aware of to achieve the best possible results.

Inspect the Damage and Contact Your Insurance Company

Upon noticing roof damage, the first step is to thoroughly inspect the affected area and promptly notify your insurance company. It is crucial to document the damage by taking photographs to support your claim. An assigned adjuster from your insurance company will evaluate the extent of the damage and determine if it meets the criteria for compensation.

Additionally, it is imperative to carefully review your insurance policy to comprehend the coverage details and familiarize yourself with the claims process.

Contact an Independent Roofer for Inspection

While your insurance company will dispatch an adjuster to assess the damage, it is crucial to have an independent roofing professional inspect the roof and provide an estimate for the necessary repairs or replacements. This step holds immense importance as it offers an unbiased evaluation from someone other than your adjuster or insurance provider. This is essential for several reasons:

  1. It offers an alternative assessment compared to that provided by your insurance company.
  2. Insurance companies lack the motivation to deliver the highest quality repairs or replacements.
  3. Frequently, adjusters are unaware of local and state building standards, resulting in overlooked details that require attention.
  4. Moreover, they often provide quotes that only meet the minimum requirements in terms of material quality and techniques.
  5. By involving a professional as your intermediary throughout the process, effective communication with the adjuster is ensured.
  6. An independent quote holds the company accountable for its actions.
  7. The independent roofer can also scrutinize the claim quote, offering their expertise.
  8. They can also assist in appealing inadequate coverage and provide additional supporting evidence for your claim.

By involving an independent roofer, you can ensure a comprehensive evaluation and advocate for your best interests.

Roof Inspections - Insurance Claim Process

Submit the Initial Claim and Required Materials

After the inspection, you and your independent roofer should collaborate to submit an initial claim to your insurance company. Alongside the claim, include a comprehensive materials list for the repair or replacement, ensuring it specifies the precise specifications, brand, model, and color of each item. This attention to detail will help prevent any discrepancies during the roof insurance claims process. It’s worth noting that most home insurance companies use a quote program called Xactimate, so it’s crucial that your roofer is familiar with this program. If they are not, it may raise concerns about their expertise, which we will address later.

Your Insurance Company’s Initial Response

Once you submit the claim, your insurance company will promptly provide an initial response within a few days. This response will comprehensively outline the details of the roof insurance claim, including the insurance company’s initial quote based on their expert inspector’s assessment and your policy coverage. It is crucial to establish clear communication between the insurance company and your independent roofer. By doing so, your roofer can thoroughly evaluate the initial claim response to ensure you receive a fair assessment and that the proposed solution adequately protects your home in the long term. If your initial claim is denied, or undervalued, or if the insurance company proposes a problematic solution such as repair instead of replacement, when necessary, rest assured that the process is not yet over.

Potential Additional Negotiation and Testing

If you find the insurance company’s initial response unsatisfactory, you have the right to negotiate for a fair settlement that adequately covers the damage to your roof. You can also request additional testing or inspection to support your claim and ensure that the proposed solution aligns with the structural integrity of your home. Persistence is key during this step, as it can greatly impact the outcome of your claim. Having an independent roofer on your side is crucial because they can act as a mediator between you and your insurance company. Unlike the insurance company, a reputable roofer is not incentivized to provide minimal payouts or repairs, and they are well-versed in industry standards.

If your roofer recommends a complete replacement based on the damage or age of your roof, but the insurance company is only offering to pay for a small repair, it’s important to consider all the factors. Many reputable roofers conduct a brittle test to assess the age and brittleness of the shingles. This test helps determine the likelihood that attempting to repair the damaged section will cause further harm to the roof. If the shingles are too old and fragile, a replacement is the recommended course of action.

Many insurance companies fail to meet the necessary standards for keeping your roof in compliance with state and local regulations. Consequently, crucial elements may be missing from your roof, leaving it vulnerable. An independent roofer can thoroughly assess these elements and ensure they are included in your quote. This ensures that your roof receives the best possible treatment, and they can also advocate for these elements in your claim, which may be overlooked by adjusters who are unfamiliar with local regulations. In many cases, with the assistance of a skilled roofer, individuals can secure the appropriate insurance coverage and obtain the highest level of protection for their homes.

Handling Your Deductible

Your roofing insurance deductible is the amount you’re responsible for paying out of pocket before your insurance coverage kicks in to cover the rest of a claim. It’s one of the primary factors influencing the cost of your insurance policy. Opting for a higher deductible can lower your premium, but it means more out-of-pocket expenses when disaster strikes. Conversely, a lower deductible results in a higher premium but reduces the financial burden during a claim. The key is finding a balance that aligns with your financial security and risk tolerance.

Some policies have a flat fee like $1000. Other policies have moved to a percentage (%) model. These percentage models can be misleading and expensive as the amount owed goes up as the value of your home does. For example, if you have a 2% deductible that means you will owe 2% of the value of your home at the time of you filing the claim. If your house is valued at $500,000, your deductible would be $10,000!

To move forward with your claim you will have to pay your deductible and a contractor cannot waive your deductible or incorptate it into the cost of the repair becuase thats it insurance fraud! Once you’ve paid your insurance deductible and the negiotation phase is coimplete to you can move forward to the repair or replacment phase and get your roof fixed.

Complete the Repair or Replacement of your Roof

Complete Roof Repair - Insurance Claim Process

After your claim is approved, your insurance company will promptly notify both you and your chosen roofer. They will then proceed to issue a check or directly deposit the funds into your account. Once you have received the funds, you are free to hire an independent roofer of your preference to carry out the necessary repairs or replacements. It is imperative to note that your insurance company is prohibited by law from compelling you to hire a specific roofing company. Should they attempt to pressure you in that direction, take a step back and rely on the independent roofer you have chosen for guidance in navigating this obstacle. Maintaining consistent communication with your roofer throughout the entire process is of utmost importance to ensure that the work aligns with the terms of your insurance agreement. Upon completion of the repairs, your roofer should conduct a final inspection to guarantee the structural integrity of your roof. The insurance company will require evidence of the completed repairs or replacement, and your roofer will be responsible for handling this aspect.

Top Tips for a Smooth Roof Insurance Claim Process

  1. Choose an independent roofer with experience in working with insurance companies.
  2. Keep a record of all communication with your insurance company and roofer.
  3. Thoroughly review the initial claim response and don’t hesitate to negotiate for a fair settlement.
  4. Consider consulting with your roofer for additional testing or inspection to support your claim.
  5. Be persistent if you encounter challenges during the roof insurance claim process.
  6. Have a thorough understanding of your insurance policy and coverage.
  7. Keep an eye out for potential red flags from your insurance company, such as pressuring you to use their preferred roofing company.
  8. Stay in communication with your roofer throughout the entire process. Overall, it is essential to have clear communication and a strong working relationship with your independent roofer to ensure a smooth and successful roof insurance claim process.

UNDERSTAND THE ROOF INSURANCE CLAIM PROCESS? CONTACT A ROOFER TODAY!

If you encounter a roofing problem, such as damage caused by storms, hail, fallen trees, or strong winds, it may be worth considering a homeowners roof insurance claim. If you’re uncertain, the wisest course of action is to reach out to a professional roofer. Many offer complimentary inspections, including assessments after storms, and can assess the likelihood of your insurance covering the situation. They can then guide you through the necessary steps.

If you reside in Tennessee or Georgia, Roof MD is the company for you. We provide complimentary roof inspections and estimates, and we are experienced in assisting clients with home insurance claims. We always fight for our clients’ rights to a fair claim. For more information and to schedule your free inspection, please visit our roof inspection page today.