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Navigating Homeowner's Insurance for Roof Repairs and Replacements

December , 2023 | 20 min. read

By Anthony Marzbanian

Roof undergoing a replacement

Are you dealing with roof damage or concerned about potential claim issues? You're in the right place.

Having homeowner's insurance is as crucial as health insurance. It's something you hope not to need, but it's vital when the unexpected happens. Like an unforeseen medical bill, unexpected damage to your home without insurance can lead to a financial nightmare. For many homeowners, navigating an insurance claim for roof damage is uncharted territory.

What's covered, what's not, and when to make a claim can be confusing.

We get it. Our family at RoofCrafters wants to help demystify this process. With three decades of experience, we've heard all sorts of questions about insurance and roofing. For efficiency, we'll focus on the most common queries. Covering essentials without turning this into a roofing insurance claim encyclopedia.

This article will guide you through understanding insurance coverage for repairs and replacements. We'll discuss:

  • What damages insurance doesn't cover
  • How to ensure you remain covered
  • What roof replacements are insurance-covered
  • The right time to contact your insurer
What damages insurance doesn't cover
How to ensure you remain covered
What roof replacements are insurance-covered
The right time to contact your insurer

Ready to become well-versed in roof-related insurance matters? Let's dive in!


Navigating Common Queries about Roofing Insurance Claims


When it comes to roof replacements and repairs, homeowners often have many questions. They especially ask about insurance coverage. Understanding what your insurance policy covers is vital. Knowing how to stay within its terms is also important.

Roofers placing a tarp on a storm-damaged roof in Florida

To help clarify these points, we've compiled a list of frequently asked questions that we often encounter:

  1. What Damage Does Insurance Cover?: Identifying the types of roof damage covered by homeowner's insurance.

  2. How to Remain Covered by My Insurance?: Understanding the steps to ensure continuous insurance coverage for your roof.

  3. Will My Insurance Company Replace or Repair My Roof?: Determining the circumstances under which insurance companies opt for roof replacement versus repair.

  4. When Should I Call My Insurance Company?: Knowing the right time to get in touch with your insurance provider after discovering roof damage.

  5. Does the Roofer I Choose Matter for Insurance?: Exploring the impact of your choice of roofing contractor on insurance claims and coverage.

metal roof repair

In the following sections, we'll delve into each of these questions in detail. We'll provide you with insights and guidance on navigating the often complex world of roofing insurance claims.

Understanding Roof Damage Coverage by Homeowner's Insurance


So, which instances out of this list are covered by insurance, and which ones aren’t? The damage covered varies depending on the policy and insurance company you choose. However, in our 30 years of experience we've found that most insurance companies provide coverage against the following factors:

  • Accidents: If your roof is damaged during an accident, your insurance will cover the damages.
  • Natural disasters: Not all policies cover all natural disasters, so check with your insurance company and pick the right one for your needs.
  • Falling objects: Roof damage by falling objects during storms or otherwise is covered. (tree limbs, hail, or flying debris)
  • Fires: Insurance covers damage caused by a fire, even if it’s caused by a natural disaster not covered by your policy.
  • Vandalism by a third party: You can claim insurance if a third party vandalizes your property.
  • Storms: Your insurance covers damage caused by storms such as roof leaks, broken roofing, missing shingles, and impact damage by hail.
  • Weight of snow: Your insurance company covers roof damage caused by the excessive weight of snow.

However, insurance companies do have certain terms you have to comply with to remain eligible for coverage. For example, if your roof caves in because it’s significantly past its working age, insurance will not cover your replacement.

debris on a flat and shingle roof


The same goes for neglecting maintenance. If you have forgotten to schedule your yearly maintenance checks and damages occur, insurance likely won’t cover any proper repairs. The most important takeaway from this article is to take care of your roofs, people!

Strategies to Ensure Continuous Roof Coverage with Your Insurance Policy


Knowing how to remain covered by insurance is one of the most important insurance roof replacement questions that homeowners don't ask. Insurance companies are businesses and cannot hand out money to anyone with an old roof. The first thing you should consider for your insurance claim is the age of your roof.  

The Impact of Roof Age on Insurance Coverage and Claims


Like everything else on this planet, your roof also has a limited lifespan. Most insurance companies offer limited or no coverage for roofs that are 15 to 20 years old because they are more prone to developing problems. Which will increase the liability for your insurance company.

old roof with rotten plywood decking

Replacing your roof on time helps protect you and your property from potential harm and is often accompanied by a discount on your insurance premium. Keep in mind, that your insurance carrier has to cover any items that may get damaged inside your home due to water damage. Let's discuss how proper maintenance can extend the lifespan of your roof. 

Importance of Regular Maintenance in Securing Insurance Claims


You cannot claim damages if your insurance company finds the damage was due to neglect. Maintain a proper schedule where you call a roofer bi-annually to conduct inspections and important repair work. Besides proper maintenance, you should frequently inspect your roof for visual damage. You should look for damaged or missing shingles on the outside roof, or stains, discoloration, peeled paint, and moss on the inside ceiling.

wind damage shingles-3

Whenever you notice any signs of damage, immediately call a roofer to patch it up to prevent the damage from spreading. Your insurance company won’t pay damages for a poorly maintained or old roof, so ensure that you keep these things in mind and take proper care of them. You'll save money in the long run by preventing common roof leaks and prolonging the life of your roof. 

RELATED ARTICLE:  Save Big On Insurance Premiums with a New Roof 

Assessing Insurance Coverage: Roof Repair vs. Replacement Options


Insurance companies offer comprehensive coverage for roof repairs and replacements. However, what they do depends on the extent of damage to your property and the age of the roof.  Your insurance company will cover repairs for a few damaged shingles if the roof can be repaired without creating more damage.  However, if there is extensive damage to your roof, they will cover you for a roof replacement.

storm damaged roof being repaired

Since repairing a majorly damaged roof isn’t feasible for the company due to the higher repair costs that follow, replacing the roof is a more viable option for them. If the damage on your roof is extensive, it is best to look into a total roof replacement anyway. 

Determining the Right Time to Contact Your Insurance Company for Roof Damage Claims


Once you notice any signs of damage, you should contact a great roofer to inspect to confirm the damages and then notify your insurance company. However, make sure to save yourself and your possessions before calling up your insurance and booking an inspection. Insurance companies have a timeframe from the moment the incident occurs for you to claim damages.

man on a cell phone

You should try to maintain a photo album that shows the roof before and after the damage to strengthen your case. After your insurance company comes over to document and inspect the damage, call to get the leak fixed immediately as tarps are only temporary.

The Influence of Your Roofing Contractor Choice on Insurance Coverage and Claims


Oddly enough, yes, the roofer you choose can have an impact on whether your insurance will cover damages or not. Outsourcing roof installations or repairs to an unskilled or budgeted contractor can be catastrophic and lead to more long-term costs. You should also never treat your roof as a DIY project and attempt to replace or repair it yourself unless you are skilled enough to perform the work.

steep 4 story roof replacement in progress 

Roofing is a highly specialized field and requires years of experience to develop the right skillset. While any roofer can get the job done, only an experienced one can give you the peace of mind that the work will be done correctly, and if there is a problem they will be around to honor their workmanship warranty.

torn up roof from roof leak

Inexperienced roofers might not seal the roof properly which can cause potential leaks. To make things worse, insurance won’t pay for damages caused by an improperly installed or repaired roof, so be diligent with the roofing contractor you choose. 

Should You Use Insurance for Your Roof Replacement?


Thinking about using your insurance for a new roof? That's a smart idea. If and only if your home has legit storm damage, of course! Insurance is there to help when your home gets damaged. The main thing to think about is how bad the damage is. Make sure you keep track of any damage and take care of your roof. This helps make sure you can use your insurance when you need it.

We understand that no one wants to deal with a storm-damage home. It's a pain in the butt!

However, when you're ready to replace your roof, find a roofer who knows their stuff and does a great job. A good roof isn't just about the materials; it's also about how well it's put together.

The RoofCrafters family is here to help. Our team can show you different roofing materials, explain warranties, or help with your insurance questions. If you want to know more, read our article, "Is Your Roof Covered by Homeowner's Insurance?" or get in touch with us. We're always ready to help!

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Anthony Marzbanian

My name is Anthony, and I am the lead estimator of RoofCrafters’ Georgia/South Carolina division. The roof is the most important part of a structure, and people count on that to protect themselves and their families. That is one of the many reasons why I love my job and enjoy coming to work every day. The continuous training, honesty, and providing the customer with the Roofcrafters experience is what makes me the best in the business.