3 pitfalls to avoid when hail damages your roof
by: Kirsten Land on June 7th, 2016 about Roofing Advice
This spring, hail has caused billions of dollars of damage across the United States. Storms have pummeled cities from from Oklahoma to Maryland. Was your roof damaged?
If it wasn’t, we’re happy for your good fortune. Chances are, however, if you live in the Plains states, you’ll face hail damage to your home at some point.
Many people wait to file a claim on their homeowner’s insurance because multiple storms will often hit throughout the spring. A newly repaired roof can be damaged again. But if you’re waiting to make the repair, keep in mind these three things that may save you money and hassles in the long run.
1 – Don't use roofing companies that want money upfront
My friend’s roof was damaged badly in the spring hail. She decided to use the small, relatively inexperienced roofing company of a relative. She thought it would be a nice gesture. But now, she’s having some problems.
The company wants to be paid in full before starting the repairs. Normally, roofers will get partial payments as claims are approved. They make the repairs. Then the insurance and mortgage companies make final payments.
In this case, the smaller company doesn’t have the means to get going. While the insurance company has approved the claim, repairs are stalled.
After a hail storm, have a few reputable roofers come assess your roof. And if they want all the money up front before starting, consider that a red flag.
2 – Don't delay in making urgent repairs
The story continues. As my friend waits on the roofer, her damaged roof is leaking. At first, she thought this was no big deal. It was part of the insurance claim that covered the hail damage, right?
Wrong. She found out that it’s considered damage due to homeowner negligence. She hasn’t made timely repairs on the home. With water damage now, and possible mold problems later, she’s in a bad spot.
If you have leaks and damage that need to be repaired, take care of them in a timely manner so you’re not on the hook for any more damage.
3 – Don't pocket the money
When your claims adjuster approves a claim, you’ll get a check from the insurance company. Did you know that some people take that money and pocket it? They cancel the roof repair, and spend the money on vacations, new cars, or cabbage. Some people really love their veggies.
The insurance company has methods of auditing how you spend the money for your roof. It’s true that you might not get caught. But more often than not, you will. And you’ll owe that money back to the insurance company.
Storm damage is awful. It’s stressful when it happens, and it’s stressful taking care of all the details to get it repaired. However, you can save yourself from additional stress by making sure to avoid these three mistakes. When it comes to your roof, turn to a trusted professional. They’ll help you every step of the way.