When bad weather strikes, it can often result in damage to the exterior of your home. An estimated 456,215 homes in Indiana are affected by hail damage every year. In these unfortunate situations, it’s good to have a plan in place to be able to get the damage taken care of promptly. A solid plan can not only save you money, it will make for a stress free repair!
Insurance Claims for Roof Damage
Experienced hail damage but aren’t sure when to file? The Insurance Information Institute (III) and insurance companies say policyholders need to file promptly. The first step to handling repairs for damage done to your home’s roof is to see if your insurance will cover the cost of repairs. Hail damage is covered typically by standard home insurance in most states but coverage is applied in a variety of ways, depending on where you live, your insurer and how your policy is set up. In many states, usually where hail is less frequent, a standard homeowners policy includes hail damage as part of your protection coverage. Homeowners file a claim, pay the policy deductible, and then the insurer pays to fix the damage. A deductible is the amount you have to pay toward a loss before your insurance company pays a claim.
Is Cosmetic Damage Covered?
Cosmetic damage from hail may be excluded from home insurance coverage. In 2013, insurers decided to create a “Cosmetic Damage Exclusion” for homeowners insurance policies, developed by the American Association of Insurance Services (AAIS). The purpose was to limit insurers’ losses when severe weather led to expensive damage claims by homeowners and other property owners. Insurance companies now have the option to exclude payments for damage to exterior surfaces, including walls, roofs, doors, and windows from hail or wind if the storm impacts the appearance but not the function of these elements. These insurance companies claim this was a necessary adjustment to keep rates from going up. Check your policy and see if you’re covered for wind and hail damage, if not, seek out alternative insurance for these instances to make sure you’re covered!
If Insurance Does Cover Hail Damage
The most important step in getting your repairs done promptly is to contact your insurance company and a local contractor to submit their quote for repairs as soon as the storm hits. Since most insurance companies and contracting companies work on a first come first serve basis, you do not want to put off making these immediately following a big storm. Don’t be afraid to turn down the contractor that the insurance company wants you to use! Hiring your own contractor means that their incentive is to satisfy you over your insurance company. The same goes for the insurance adjuster. Hiring your own public adjuster and their team of roof inspectors, contractors, and other professionals is a good way to make sure that you get the payout you deserve.