What You Need to Know about Roof Repairs & Roof Replacements after Damage from Hail, Wind & Storms
16:09 20 November 2019
For most people, their home is their biggest investment and when their residence’s roofing and siding is wracked with damage after large storms the process of restoring and repairing that damage can be a nightmare. From mitigating leaks to filing a claim with homeowners insurance, to finding and hiring a reputable local roofing contractor, the process is long and arduous. Furthermore, when that process is not handled correctly it can be extraordinarily costly - both in terms of money spent and in time lost. Knowing what needs to be done in order to adequately restore your property after storm damage is important , and having that knowledge will help you ensure that a) your insurance company provides approval and payment for what you’re entitled to under your policy, and b) your roofing and restoration contractor is qualified to perform those repairs adequately and sufficiently. This article will lend some general information on the insurance restoration and roof replacement process so that you are better able to navigate that process and get through what could otherwise be a very financially and emotionally draining experience.
WORKING WITH ROOFERS & RESTORATIONS CONTRACTORS AFTER STORMS
It’s often very helpful to have a knowledgeable professional on your side after your home suffers damages from storms. The good news for homeowners is that there are roofing and restoration contractors who specialize in working with insurance companies on storm damage siding and roof replacement projects. These experts know how to maximize claims in order to secure full insurance approval and payment for repairs. It’s often in a homeowners’ best interest to sign with one of these restoration companies immediately following a storm, as their professionals will perform damage inspections and help report to and file with the insurance company. If a homeowner relies only on their insurance adjuster’s evaluation of damage they could end up receiving approval for repairs that are far less than sufficient, and this could lead to serious structural problems in the future.
Furthermore, most roofing restoration contractors work under a contingency wherein the homeowner only owes the contractor their deductible for repairs if and only if the contractor is able to secure approval from the insurance company. This makes signing with the contractor an entirely risk-free endeavor for the homeowner. Both homeowner and contractor have their best interests aligned: the contractor wants to get as much work as possible approved in order to be hired for the biggest restoration project possible, and the homeowner wants to be able to get as much new construction completed for that deductible payment, which is usually between $500 and $2,000. When we consider that the average roof replacement cost is $7,000 we see that filing an insurance claim after storm damage is a significant investment in one’s home.
HOW INSURANCE COMPANIES CUT COSTS BY APPROVING BARE-MINIMUM REPAIRS & DENYING CLAIMS
Insurance companies know that during the busy storm season they are going to have to handle an increased volume of claims from their policyholders for damage to roofing and siding caused by hail and high winds. The unfortunate reality is that they have a very clear profit motive to cut costs by paying for the absolute minimum amount of repairs and by even denying claims outright. Working with an experienced contractor to help discover and report all damage is important, but in the case of exceptionally difficult insurers it is sometimes not enough, and an actual insurance policy professional is needed. Enter the public insurance adjuster. Working on behalf of policyholders and legally allowed to negotiate on behalf of the insured, a public adjuster is often able to secure significantly hire dollar amounts for restorations and repairs of property damage. Read up on public adjusters and how they help policyholders on this helpful FAQ article. Many roofers and public adjusters work together to evaluate property damage and file claims on behalf of homeowners, invoke the appraisal clause when denials are issued, etc. In the same way a lawyer defends a client in court, a public adjuster represents policyholders in the claims process. In order to protect your financial interests in your home, it’s often a great idea to work with a P.A., and most offer free initial consultations to find out if they can help.
Your home is probably your biggest asset, and you have homeowners insurance in order to protect against unforeseen losses like damage from storms. The reality is that insurance companies do not want policyholders to be aware of how much they are entitled to under their policy when their home suffers damage from covered perils like storms, hail and wind. Most homeowners go through the entire process alone and end up having to bear the burden of repair costs that by rights ought to be borne by their insurer, so make sure you work with an experienced restoration contractor and/or public adjuster in order to hold your insurance company accountable and get what you deserve from your policy.
SIDING AND ROOFING REPLACEMENTS FOR PEACE OF MIND
Your home’s roof and siding are each composed of systems of barriers that are put in place to protect your property from the elements, and they get chipped away at by weather year-round. When a storm finally breaks through those barriers it often means the entire system has to be replaced, because each of the barriers - underlayments, wraps and flashings - work together to form that roofing or siding system. An experienced contractor has the structural engineering knowledge to know that, and can argue against an insurance company’s insufficient evaluation of damage. Professional contractors are your best friend when it comes to property damage restorations, and a simple Google search can put you in touch with one. Make sure you check reviews, references and licensing information so you end up with a reputable, verifiable contractor. Once you’ve found one, you can rest assured that your home is in good hands, and you’ve likely found a life-long partner in home improvements and repairs.
RJ D’Angelo is the Chief Operating Officer at JWE Remodeling, a roofing contractor in Hanover Pennsylvania. JWE is a highly-rated, Google-Guaranteed contractor, a GAF-certified roofer, and a CertainTeed “ShingleMaster”. They serve greater south-central Pennsylvania with storm damage insurance restorations and home improvements, and they pride themselves on their 5-star reviews and dedication to partnering with homeowners to get property damages restored.