COVID-19 Hands-Free Process. Click here to learn more.

Roof Insurance Claim Process: A Complete Guide

Insurance can protect your assets from accidents and unexpected forces of nature, but understanding how your coverage works is a complex process made more difficult by financial stress. When you need a San Diego roofing contractor to address roof damage to protect your home from leaks and other issues, Preman Roofing-Solar can help you work with your insurance company throughout the roof insurance claims process to get the coverage you need to pay for it. 

With any issue in your home, you should put in the work to prepare for the worst-case scenario and prevent it however you can. The best way to do that is to get a deeper understanding of your coverage and stay on top of roof maintenance throughout the year so you can avoid any surprises that can cause serious damage to your home. 

Protecting yourself with routine maintenance 

If you are asking the question, “does homeowners insurance cover roof replacement if damage has occured” it varies case by case. The typical homeowners’ insurance policy won’t cover damage caused by neglect, so it’s crucial to keep up with your roof. You should have a roof inspection twice a year in the spring and fall, and a roofing contractor can offer routine maintenance to clean your roof from moss, mildew, and debris. They will check your gutters and shingles for damage, and monitor flashing for leaks, and let you know when it’s time for roof repairs or replacement. Additionally, establishing a relationship with a roofing company will speed up the process when it’s time to make a claim, and having someone you trust will ensure you’re only getting work that’s already covered.

Roof repair and replacement are among the most costly issues you’ll face as a homeowner, and while an insurance policy will cover sudden damage from accidents or unpreventable damage, they usually don’t cover repairs. A home warranty that offers roof coverage can help you with routine services and roof leak repair, and it may be worth the investment. Whether your repairs and maintenance are covered by a home warranty or not, be sure to keep all documents related to your roof’s upkeep so you can show them to your insurance adjuster if you do need to file a claim for roof replacement.

Understanding your coverage

Many homeowners purchase insurance because it’s required by their mortgage company, and once they have a policy, they tend to forget about it once it’s in place. However, keeping track of what your policy covers and continuing to shop around will ensure you always have the best coverage at the most affordable price. You should always do your due diligence and only work with insurance companies that have a good reputation for paying out benefits.

Every insurance policy is a little different, but there are typically five different levels of coverage for single-family homes. These can broadly be defined as open peril or named peril policies. Open peril policies will cover the cost of replacement for damages from anything except named exclusions, while named peril policies will only cover the damages caused by things listed on your policy. Common exclusions could be flood, hail damage, water and mold damage, and earthquakes. 

The other major difference between the policies is how they pay out. Some policies will cover the full replacement cost to replace your roof, as long as you are replacing it with the same kind of roofing materials. That means if you have asphalt shingles, your policy won’t cover the cost to upgrade to higher-quality types of roof shingles or a metal roof unless you purchase an additional rider that covers a portion of upgrades. 

Other policies will only pay out the actual cash value of your materials, and because of depreciation, that will depend on the age of your roof. You can use a depreciation calculator to get an idea of how much your roof will depreciate over the years, and use that information to help you determine if you should select a different policy. Depending on the type of roof you have, it may be worth the money to invest in a more expensive policy to cover the replacement cost. For example, asphalt shingles depreciate twice as fast as metal roofing solutions.

No matter how the payout works, you’ll have to meet the deductible first in order to get your benefits. If your deductible is too high for you to meet realistically, you should make adjustments to your policy or find one that better suits your needs, otherwise you’re wasting money on your premiums for benefits you won’t be able to use. 

When to file a claim

Any time there is a storm or other natural disaster that can lead to wind damage or other issues, you should hire a roofer to assess the damage. While it may be easy for you to spot some damage, a roofer has the tools and experience to find leaks and other issues, as well as safely walk the roof during the inspection. They will also help you document all the damage so you can stay organized for your roof damage claim. Make sure every picture you take is time-stamped so you a claims adjuster can rule out insurance fraud. 

There is often a window of time to file a roof claim after storm damage, sometimes as little as two weeks. The sooner you spot the issues, the more likely your policy will cover them. Contacting your roofer immediately will also allow them to put tarps in place for you to prevent water damage and other issues if you have a leak. They can also help you determine when a claim is worth making, or when the associated costs aren’t worth the cost of making a claim.

Some damages that are caused by faulty materials or improper repairs and installations may be covered by a manufacturer’s warranty or by a workmanship warranty, and your roofer can help you with this process to ensure you cover all your bases.

If you do need to make an insurance claim, be prepared to provide documents and images that show the size and location of the damage, when it occurred, as well as a detailed breakdown of what is required for the repairs and the associated costs. Your roofing company should be able to help you every step of the way if you have questions or concerns. 

When you make a roof replacement insurance claim, your insurance company will send a claims adjuster to inspect the damage and rule out insurance fraud and determine if neglect or other exclusions contributed to the damage. 

Working with your insurance adjuster

The insurance adjuster will do their own thorough inspection of the damage and determine if and how much the company will pay out for damages. Ideally, your roofing company will have already done a good job with this, and there shouldn’t be any surprises. As long as you have maintained your roof and filed your claim in a timely manner, everything should proceed efficiently. 

It’s worth noting that you don’t have to share your payout benefits with your roofing company, but if you are working with reputable contractors, they can help you make sure you get the best quality materials and craftsmanship without going over budget or underutilizing your benefits. 

If your insurance company denies you coverage, and you feel that they are in the wrong, you can file an appeal with a public adjuster. Public adjusters provide an additional layer of protection for consumers, and they will advocate on your behalf if an insurance company is wrongfully denying your claims.

Roofing companies experienced in dealing with insurance claims can help connect you to a public adjuster and provide them with information on your behalf. In some instances, hiring an attorney can expedite this process and get you the settlement you deserve so you can rest assured you’ll have a working roof over your head as soon as possible. 

Roofing experts equipped to handle insurance claims

Working with an insurance company can be a nightmare, especially if you don’t have someone armed with experience on your side. While some insurance companies will provide the help you need, others will try to fight every claim and pay out as little as possible. 

Preman Roofing-Solar can work with you to ensure your insurance company provides all of the benefits they are required to with your policy, and help you avoid settling for less than you are entitled to. We will also provide prompt estimates and timelines to both you and your insurance company, and guarantee the price of our work so you’re not surprised with a bill after the work is complete. 

Preman Roofing-Solar has provided repairs and replacement for commercial roofing and residential roofing in the San Diego area for over 20 years. All of the experienced San Diego roofing contractors we use are employees.  We never use outside contractors so we can ensure you have quality materials and craftsmanship backed with our guarantee. Contact us today to schedule your free estimate, and learn more about how we can work with you to file insurance claims to ensure you get the coverage you deserve.