Are Roof Replacements Covered by Homeowners Insurance?
Most home owners insurance policies cover the replacement of a new roof, despite age, only if nature was at fault.
Life spans of older roofs exceeding their limit are not eligible for replacement due to the fact that it is under general maintenance, leaving the responsibility to the homeowner.
When evaluating your home, you’ll realize the roof will be at the forefront of any direct exposure. From heavy ice storms and snow to tropical storms and hurricanes, the roof will take on a lot of pressure from nature.
Because of the damage nature can cause, homeowners are qualified for a partial or total roof replacement determined by the insurance company.
The life span of a roof is determined by its material and many different roofs have different material compositions. As a homeowner, you are responsible for the upkeep of your roof. A leaking roof that is damaged is covered under most insurances, but the roof repair is not.
There are preventative steps a homeowner can take to ensure their roof’s health. Hiring licensed professionals to regularly inspect the roof is recommended by insurance companies. Roofing companies may even inspect the roof for free if they feel they may have a potential business client in the future.
Areas prone to high impact wind damage must have a roof designed to the current building codes, which prevent losses. Roofs that do not collect water and free of debris is a must when trying to prevent a damaged roof. Trim any trees that are touching or hanging over the roof. Following these steps can reduce the need to replace the whole roof and just partial, or minimal replacements at best.
Home Owner’s Insurance Can Pay for Roof Replacement
If your roof is more than 20 years old, it will be considered past it’s life expectancy by insurance companies and they will reimburse you a small portion or no compensation at all. If an insurance company feels you have neglected or improperly maintained your roof, even using expensive roofing materials, they will not reimburse you. Roofs with more than two years of roofing material are also added to the policy exclusions.
To put yourself in the best position for an insurance company to pay for your replacement roof, ask them to inspect the roof. Obtain all necessary documents, whether its homeowners insurance policies or inspection reports, have the information ready before they arrive.
Photos of damage before and after are also important for any claims processes. An adjuster will be sent by the insurance company to inspect damages and offer an assessment of their own.
Savings Tips for New Roof Costs
Roofing costs can put a dent in your pocket, with roof replacements running from $260 to $700 per square based on the material used. For asphalt shingle repairs, about $150 to $350 can be offered by contractors. Metal roofing costs however will range from $350 to $1000 for the tile and metal roof repair. To minimize your replacement and repair costs, consider the following:
- Timing: Schedule your roofing replacement when most contractors are not busy. Summer to fall is the busiest time of the year, while winter or spring will be slow and lower fees associated with it.
- Add an overlay: Install new singles over existing shingles. Fewer labor hours will be required since the old roofing is still in place, while costing less than a replacement. The downside however is that overlays can void warranties on roofing materials previously used. In the future if you were to need a full replacement however, overlays would increase the labor costs due to additional job waste.
- DIY (Do it yourself): If you have the proper equipment and aren’t afraid of heights, consider doing some of the job yourself. Removing the previous roofing material can reduce costs before the contractors arrive.
- Explore your options: Gather several quotes from different roofs and requests local references. Make sure they offer a warranty on materials and installation. Beware of low bids, as it can mean subpar work.
- Research thoroughly: Know of the exact materials you want and the intricacy of your roofs needs. Obtain as much information as possible before speaking with contractors.