It’s 2 am in the morning, and storm winds and rain are swirling outside your home.  But what startles you and wakes you up is the sound and sight of water pouring into your home from the ceiling…UGH!

Your first thought is to get a bucket and place it under the leak to prevent additional damage and stay awake for the rest of the night. Sounds like a reasonable Plan.

Your second thought is to call your insurance company to reach an agent in one of their call centers. Again, it sounds like a reasonable plan, right? Well, maybe not. Here’s why and some things to consider before approaching your insurance company with a roof damage claim.

Calling Your Insurance After Your Roof is Damaged

This is what typically happens when homeowners contact the insurance company first. The agent on the phone will arrange for an adjuster to visit your home to assess the damage. The problem I see with this scenario is “typically,” Insurance adjusters do not have any experience with roofing. And, if the adjuster visiting your home to assess the damage does have “some” knowledge of roofing, it will be limited at best.

When the adjuster arrives, he or she may or may not get on your roof, but the adjuster will look for a “source” of the leak and assess the cost to repair or replace your roof in writing. Their assessment/claim, however, will not be comprehensive as they do not have a working knowledge of “roofing” and the many ways storms can damage a roof (i.e., flashing, skylights, sanitary vent pipes, exhaust fans, etc.). Hot tip: The damage doesn’t always include the shingles.

Furthermore, if the assessment of the damage to your roof is close to your deductible, you will likely not receive any compensation even if you file a claim. But even a small claim will be listed in your file and could increase your rate the following year…Double UGH!

Wait, a Storm Damaged My Roof, What Should I Do?

If the storm damage is excessive, then the insurance adjuster will issue in writing a detailed assessment of the damage. You will be able to file a claim with your insurance company and get a brand-new roof. Sounds Wonderful! Maybe.

As stated earlier, typically, the insurance adjuster is not an expert on roofing issues. Yes, you will get new shingles on your roof, but that does not necessarily mean you will have a totally new roof.  Most insurance adjusters will completely ignore replacing sanitary vent pipe collars, exhaust fans, flashing, etc.  When these details, which are critical components to a well-functioning roof, are not listed as needing replacement, they won’t be included in your claim.

This scenario will result in new shingles but NOT a new roof!

According to Roofing Contractor, “The insurance adjuster has no responsibility to find damages.” This is why having your own assessment and documentation of the roof damage can help you before you file a claim.

A Comprehensive Roof Estimate Can Inform Whether to File an Insurance Claim

After experiencing storm damage to your roof in Alexandria, Virginia, and the surrounding area, contact a REPUTABLE, LICENSED roofing contractor like Alexandria Roofing, Co. Inc. Our estimates are free and will never show up as a claim in your Insurance company’s file. We can educate you about what is going on with your roof, help you document the damage, and replace your roof. We can also take care of smaller repairs if needed. We stand behind our workmanship, and we offer a warranty, too.

Our estimator will be able to provide a professional review of your roof to determine if the damage is a small repair or more extensive. You can use this information to see if it will be in your best interest contact your insurance company. If that is the course of action that should be taken, then you will be equipped with a complete, itemized estimate for the new roof issued by a reputable and licensed roofing contractor.

With this information in hand, you will be equipped with the information you need to file an insurance claim or work with a roofer directly for a smaller repair. Storms are a part of life, but knowing what to do in the event of storm damage to your roof can give you peace of mind.

Storm Damaged Your Roof? Contact Us Before You Call Your Insurance Company

Storms are a fact of life; homes can sometimes be damaged when storms are severe enough. Having a local, family-owned roofing company on your side can make a big difference to your comfort. Our roofing company serves residential and commercial customers in Alexandria, Arlington, Virginia, and Fairfax County. Call us at (703) 354-3531 or set up an appointment today.