A variety of situations can cause roof damage, including high winds, hail, storms, and falling objects (i.e. trees). Damage to your roof can cause substantial damage to the inside of your home. Therefore, even minor roof damage should not be ignored.
In many cases, roof damage is covered by your insurance policy. It is important that you file an insurance claim to have the repair to your roof paid for by the company. Below are seven tips for filing a roof replacement insurance claim from PFM Roofing that can help you during the insurance claim process.
1. Contact Your Insurance Company or Insurance Agent Immediately
In some cases, a delay in reporting roof damage to your insurance company can make it more difficult to have the roof repairs paid for by your insurance provider. You should call your insurance agent or the claims department of your insurance company to report the damage to your roof as soon as you become aware of the damage. In addition, by filing a claim quickly, you might reduce the time it takes to process the claim, especially if many homes or businesses in your area sustained roof damage from a natural disaster.
Make sure that you keep detailed notes of the conversation, including the date you file the claim report, the person’s name who took the report, the contact information for that person, and your claim number. If you receive any instructions regarding the claim, you need to write those instructions in your notes and read the information back to the representative to ensure you have the correct information.
2. Read Your Insurance Policy Very Carefully
The terms and conditions of your insurance policy are a binding legal contract between you and the insurance company. The company is required to uphold the terms of the contract in good faith, meaning if you have roof damage that is covered by the insurance policy, the insurance company should pay for the roof repairs. However, some terms or conditions in the insurance contract could limit coverage, including deductibles and exclusions to coverage. Carefully reviewing your policy before an insurance adjuster or an inspector visits your property can help you understand your rights regarding roof repairs.
3. Carefully Document the Damages
If possible, you should take photographs and video of the roof damage and keep detailed notes regarding the damage. Because it could be unsafe for you to climb onto your roof, you should take pictures and video from the ground using the zoom feature of your camera. Taking photographs and video of other damage to your home can also help substantiate the damage to the roof. When the insurance adjuster or insurance inspector documents the roof damage, request copies of the photographs, video, and notes for your records.
4. Document Emergency Repairs
Most insurance policies require property owners to make emergency repairs to mitigate further damage. In other words, if the roof damage will cause more damage to your home if it is not repaired immediately, you might need to make emergency repairs to prevent additional damage. For instance, replacing a broken skylight or repairing or tarping a large hole in the roof.
If you need to make emergency repairs, you should notify your insurance company. Only use a professional roofing company or roofing contractor to make the repairs. Keep detailed notes and records of the emergency repair, including before and after photographs and receipts for all expenses.
5. Keep Detailed Notes for Your Records
Throughout the entire process, you need to keep detailed notes and records. You need to document each conversation or meeting regarding the damage to your roof. In your notes, include the date and time of the conversation; the subject matter; the details discussed; any resolutions; and, any promises made to you. In addition to written notes, you need to keep detailed records of all expenses incurred because of the roof damage. Keep copies of all receipts, invoices, statements, and payments.
6. Meet with the Insurance Adjuster or Inspector
If possible, you should be at home when the insurance adjuster inspects the damage to your roof. Point out any damage you believe the adjuster might have missed during his inspection. You want to make sure that the adjuster inspects every area of your roof for damage. Also, make sure you request a full copy of the adjuster’s report for your records.
7. Obtain an Independent Statement of Loss
You have the right to obtain a statement of loss from an independent contractor. However, you will probably be responsible for the cost of the statement (some contractors and companies offer free statements if you choose their company for repairs). A statement of loss should include a detailed description of the roof damages; the quality and quantity of materials required to repair the roof damage; the current cost of materials, and the labor cost for the repairs.
When you present an independent statement of loss to your insurance company from a qualified professional, it is more difficult for the company to underpay your insurance claim for roof damage.
Your Indianapolis Roofing Professionals
If your roof has been damaged, the Indianapolis roofing professionals of PFM Roofing can help. Contact our office to discuss how we can help you during the insurance claims process.