Your roofing system is one of the most important parts of your home. It protects you and your family from the harsh weather and boosts the curb appeal of your home. Regular maintenance is thus essential in keeping your roof healthy and durable to avoid a costly catastrophe. However, unexpected disasters can strike anytime and may cause irreparable damage to your roof.
Since roof replacement can be a costly home improvement project, roofing experts recommend homeowners invest in a solid insurance policy. Homeowners insurance is specifically designed to protect you and your home from unexpected damage. While most insurance policies cover fire or storm damage, keep in mind that there are roof issues that may not be covered.
What Kind of Roof Damage Is Covered by Your Insurance?
The coverage of your insurance will vary from policy to policy. The dwelling coverage section of your homeowners insurance generally covers the overall house structure, including your roofing system. The types of roof damage covered by your insurance will depend on the policy’s terms as well as the reasons your roof needs to be repaired or replaced. That’s why it’s crucial that you review the specifics under your insurance plan.
Often, your insurance will be able to cover accidental roof damage caused by certain events, such as fire, hailstorms, heavy winds or snowfall. For instance, if a tree falls on your roof during a windstorm or if the roof is damaged by hail, your dwelling coverage will cover the cost of the roof repair. On the other hand, a nearby shed or detached garage that has been damaged by the same storm will be found under a non-dwelling or “other structures” clause.
In most homeowner insurance policies, it’s also important to note that you will still likely have to pay a deductible before your insurance company covers the remaining balance. Your coverage plan may also cap total repair costs at a certain level. Thus, you need to double-check the fine print of your insurance policy and determine what can be covered or not. You may also call a professional roofer to inspect the roof damage before filing an insurance claim to prevent high rates from filing non-payable claims.
Will Your Insurance Cover Wear and Tear?
As years go by, harsh weather and lack of maintenance will contribute to roof wear and tear. In some instances, wear and tear are completely inevitable as your home ages. For most insurers, however, wear and tear can be avoided if a homeowner performs the proper routine maintenance to their home.
When homeowners invest in an insurance policy, there is a binding agreement between the homeowner and the insurance company. In this agreement, homeowners agree to keep up with annual maintenance, including roof repair, and the insurance will be there should an unexpected loss occur. This keeps the insurance company from being liable in situations wherein the damage is actually due to the homeowner’s failure to maintain their property.
For all these reasons, you have to make sure your home, especially your roof, is well-maintained. If you notice an issue, don’t wait a few months to report it to your insurance agent. In the event that the issue is not covered, contact your local roofer to have it fixed. Small fixes can be a burden at the moment, but keep in mind that you may be left with a large bill of repairs if your insurance claim is denied in the future.
Moreover, this also highlights the importance of annual roof inspections. Be sure to schedule a professional inspection at least two times a year: once in the spring and once in the fall. During the roof inspection, qualified roofing contractors will examine your roofing system and look for any signs of damage that needs attention. They will also perform the necessary repairs to prevent voiding your homeowners insurance.
What Other Roof Issues Are Not Covered by Your Insurance?
Aside from wear and tear, there are other roof issues that your homeowners insurance policy will not cover. We list some of them here:
- Expensive Roofing Materials
Most insurance companies don’t want to cover roofing materials that are costly, vulnerable or both. For instance, wood shake roofs are considered financially risky because not only are they more expensive than most, but also have a shorter lifespan than shingle roofs. Moreover, metal roofs are costly and can be easily dented during hailstorms. Alternatively, insurance companies provide better coverage for homeowners with impact-resistant or wind-resistant roofing systems as they are unlikely to pay for hail and windstorm damage.
- Aging Roof
If your roof is nearing the end of its lifespan, your roof coverage may not be applied. This applies to roofing systems that are 20 years or older as this is the average lifespan of most shingle roofs in the United States. In addition to that, your roof may also be deemed too old if one of the lower layers is more than 20 years old and you had a new roof layer added on top of it. This is because insurance companies do not want to pay for a full roof replacement if it’s likely near the end of its service life, regardless of whether it sustained damage or not. In some cases, however, your insurance company may cover repair costs, but not a replacement.
- Peril Not Covered by Insurance Policy
As previously mentioned, homeowners need to go through their policy to fully grasp what types of damage or peril are included and excluded. Some of the perils under a homeowners insurance policy typically consist of lightning storms, electrical surges and wildfires, among others. By comparison, the types of damage that are seldom covered by your policy include flooding, earthquakes, pest infestation, sewer backup and most mold and mildew growth.
Are you looking for professional roofing contractors in Brainerd, MN? Turn to the experts at Neumann Construction! Our team of roofers is experienced and qualified to assist you with your roofing needs, including filing for your roof insurance claim. Give us a call at (218) 270-0009, or fill out our contact form to set an appointment.