Working with insurance on roofing claims
It is no secret that depending on the scope of the work required, roof repairs can be expensive. This is understandable given the importance of your roof and the high level of skill required to work on it. However, it is not good for your pocketbook. Luckily, your insurance company may cover your roofing repairs, saving you out-of-pocket expenses. Learn what you need to know about working with your insurance on roofing claims, as well as how your roofing contractors can assist you with the process.
The Right Roofers Can Help with Insurance Claims
No one likes dealing with insurance companies, but the good news is that your roofing company can likely assist you with the process. At the very least, they will be knowledgeable about the process and know what information your insurance company needs, helping you during the process.
Roofers Can Interact with Adjusters
The right roofers will be more than happy to visit your home at the same time as your insurance adjuster so they can communicate everything clearly and help you with your claim. By interacting directly with the adjuster, your roofing professional can help ensure that everything gets covered, so your roof is truly back to its original condition.
In many cases, the insurance adjuster may not be familiar with local building codes, but your roofer always will be. This is important since those building codes may affect how repairs need to be done or what options are available. Since the roofing contractor is aware of these codes, they can save a great deal of time and hassle. After all, if they were not there and the adjuster gave an estimate based on repairs that are not up to code in your area, you would have to wait even longer for a new evaluation.
What to Expect from the Insurance Company
You should work to contact your insurance company as soon as possible to get the ball rolling on your insurance claim. You will not be able to start working on the repairs until an adjuster comes out to inspect your roof, since they need to see the damage.
Most insurance companies will start by assigning you a claim representative. This is usually an adjuster who comes to inspect your roof and determine the extent of the damage. Remember, you ideally want your roofer there when they complete this adjustment or inspection process. Expect the adjuster to take notes as well as photos of the damage. They may also ask you questions.
Based on their assessment of the damage to your roof, your insurance adjuster will come up with an estimate for the repairs. This will also take your policy type into account, specifically, the type of coverage it includes.
How Your Roofer Can Help
Throughout the process of working with insurance on a roofing claim, your roofing contractor will be able to assist you in numerous ways, in addition to performing the repairs.
During the Initial Inspection
As mentioned, the roofer can be present during the adjuster’s inspection to ensure that they do not miss any damage that should be covered. They will also be able to confirm that the repairs the adjuster is estimating are in accordance with local building codes.
Reviewing the Claim Estimate
Your roofer will also be able to help you review your roofing claim estimate. This is very important since adjusters are not roofing experts. Instead, they typically rely on software that will automatically determine coverage based on the type of damage, your location, and your policy.
Any errors can lead to inaccurate estimates that leave you with greater out-of-pocket expenses or wasted time trying to get insurance to cover more. This can include input errors if your adjuster mistypes as well as situations where they misunderstand the impact of a type of damage due to inexperience with roofs.
This is particularly important because although you could theoretically have a claim estimate fixed in the future, it is much more challenging to do so. Your insurance company will be hesitant to spend additional resources correcting the errors, especially if they would result in them paying more.
Supplementals For Roofing Claims
The term supplemental or supplement is an additional charge that must get added to the claim due to finding problems after the work on the roof has already started. Your roofer can file supplementals with the insurance company. This supplemental is documentation or proof that shows why your roof requires specific work or materials for your roof to go back to its previous state.
Supplementals can become necessary because of mistakes or missed damage, or if specific damage was not obvious until part of the roof had already been removed.
General Roofing Claim Insurance Advice
Of course, the best roofing contractors are also more than happy to offer you general advice about navigating insurance claims. Because of the cost of roof repairs and the fact that they are very commonly covered by insurance, roofing contractors have a great deal of experience interacting with roofing companies. This means that they know the ins and outs of the process and can offer you advice.
Understanding Your Roof Coverage
The coverage for your roof will depend on your insurance policy, but there are two general categories, RCV and ACV, which stand for replacement cost value and actual cash value, respectively.
RCV is more common, and it does not account for depreciation. In this case, the insurance pays whatever is needed to bring the roof back to its original condition, which is the cost to replace it minus your applicable deductibles.
With ACV coverage, your insurance company also subtracts your roof’s depreciation from the amount they pay out. So, the calculation is the amount necessary for the replacement or repairs, minus your roof’s depreciation, minus your deductible. Some companies encourage you to opt for ACV policies to reduce their payouts. At the same time, they tend to have smaller premiums, so there is a trade-off.
The most important thing to know when working with insurance on roofing claims is that the process will go significantly easier if you have a roofing contractor that you can trust and who can offer you advice and guide the process.