When it comes to roof restoration, filing an insurance claim should be your last resort. It may seem counterintuitive to shoulder the entire cost of your roofing project if you are paying your premium regularly every month. While it is natural to feel some sense of entitlement, understand that not every asphalt-shingle or metal roof repair expense is your insurer’s responsibility.
More often than not, asking your insurance company to pay you under the wrong circumstances can backfire on you. Inappropriate claim activity could inflate your rate or get your insurance cancelled. Either way, you will be doomed to suffer.
So, when should you file an insurance claim for roof damage? Watch out for the signs below to determine whether or not you should contact your insurer about your roofing problem.
You Have a Policy That Covers the Damaged Components
Review your insurance policy to see whether the damaged component in question is covered. Policies are not equal, and the perils they cover can vary greatly. Do not make an assumption based on what you know about other people’s insurance coverages, even if they are provided by the same company.
Understand that homeowners insurance does not cover every damage. Reading your policy meticulously will refresh your memory on not just the covered components but also exclusions and limitations. This way, you can file a claim with confidence and fight for what you deserve if you are in the right.
You Did Everything You Could to Prevent the Damage
Neglecting maintenance is a common moral hazard of getting insured. Realize that your homeowners' insurance policy will take effect only when a peril like violent weather lead to a sudden loss like the destruction of your roof. You may not be able to use your insurance if the root cause of damage stems from not observing routine inspection and timely repairs.
The upkeep of your roof is your responsibility. Your insurance company will step in only when your roof still get ruined despite maintaining it properly.
It is imperative that you hire a competent contractor to take care of your roof in order to keep a detailed record of its maintenance history. Otherwise, you may lack acceptable and verifiable proof that you give your roofing system adequate TLC upon filing a claim.
You are Dealing with Major Damage
The biggest mistake of many homeowners is to claim minor problems. You may have the right to do so, but it may cause you to file more claims than you should. Generally, insurers prefer policyholders that file just once every 10 years. Anything more than that may trigger a rate hike or insurance coverage cancellation.
For the said reason, reserve your claim for a major cause of roof damage. Paying for the price of a small repair is a tiny sacrifice to avoid a significant premium increase in the future, which will likely cost you more money.
Not filing a claim whenever you experience roof damage might be hard to accept, but you should correct your perception of how insurance works. If you truly want to minimize your expenses as a property owner and still get adequate coverage, you should get the highest deductible to reduce your premium monthly.