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First Steps After Discovering Storm Damage

January , 2024 | 10 min. read

By Kevin Mills

severe damage to home by hurricane

If storms are common where you live, knowing what to do after one hits is key. Maybe you're new to stormy areas, or you're just visiting. If so, the aftermath of a storm can feel overwhelming.

We understand that storms can be scary. In Florida, we get everything from afternoon showers to big tropical storms. These natural events can be unpredictable and worrying, especially when your home might be at risk. At RoofCrafters, we've been fixing storm-damaged roofs for 30 years. We've seen a lot and learned how to handle these situations well.

Luckily, there are steps you can take to help protect your roof from storm damage. Whether you're dealing with recent damage or want to be ready for the next storm, you're in the right place. In this article, we're going to tell you what actions to take if a storm has hit your property. We'll show you the best ways to take care of your roof and keep it safe. Let's get started!


I have storm damage, now what do i do


Initial Damage Assessment After a Storm


As soon as it's safe, take a careful look around your home. Start by checking your roof. Look out for damaged or missing shingles, and any issues with your gutters. Sometimes, you might even find that parts of your roof have been torn off. Be extra cautious if you're checking the attic. Watch out for signs of water getting in, like leaks or wet spots.

wind damage 3-tab shingles

Don't just stop at the roof. The storm could have affected other parts of your property too. Fallen trees, scattered debris, dents in your yard, and broken windows or doors are all things to look for. 


roof inspection in progressIt's important to spot all the damages before you reach out to a local storm damage expert. This thorough check helps them understand exactly what needs fixing.

It's important to spot all the damages before you reach out to a local storm damage expert. This thorough check helps them understand exactly what needs fixing.

Safety First: Post-Storm Precautions


After a storm, prioritizing safety is crucial. Nobody needs to put their life in danger over property damage.

Storm damage sign in front of a tile roof with severe wind damage

Here are some vital steps to follow:

  1. Prioritize Safety: If the storm has compromised the structural integrity of your home, avoid going inside. The risk of a collapse is real. Wait outside or in a safe area until professional help arrives.

  2. Check Plumbing: Inspect your pipes and water lines for any damage. If necessary, shut off all valves and faucets in your kitchen and bathroom. If you suspect any damage to your waterline or contamination, refrain from using the water.

  3. Beware of Hazards: Storms can leave dangerous debris like glass shards and exposed nails. Always wear sturdy shoes when stepping outside to inspect damages.

  4. Steer Clear of Water Bodies: Post-storm, avoid areas with standing water. This includes flooded basements or accumulated water outdoors. Such water could be contaminated or electrified from downed power lines. Keep children away from these areas for their safety.

  5. Ventilate in Case of Gas Leaks: If you smell gas or suspect a leak, open all windows and doors for ventilation and exit the property. Immediately contact the gas company or relevant authorities to address the situation.

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Recording Storm Damage: Essential Steps


You want to document by taking photos of all the damage you can see and then get your homeowner’s insurance paperwork handy. This will help make it easier to file a claim on your homeowner’s insurance. Being proactive here can go a long way.

written insurance policy

Documenting damage thoroughly is a key step after a storm. Here's how to do it effectively:

  1. Capture the Damage: Take clear photos or videos of all visible damage. This includes damages to your roof, windows, doors, and any other affected areas of your property.

  2. Gather Insurance Information: Have your homeowner's insurance documents accessible. This will streamline the process when you file a claim.

  3. Be Proactive: Being proactive in documenting damage can aid in the insurance claim process. Don't overlook this crucial step.

  4. Consult a Professional: If you're uncertain about the extent of roof damage. It's wise to consult with your preferred local roofing contractor before filing an insurance claim. They can provide a professional assessment, which is invaluable in understanding the full scope of the damage.

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Initiating the Insurance Claim Process


When you're certain the repair costs will exceed your deductible. Your ready to contact your homeowner's insurance provider.

man on a cell phone

Here's how to proceed:

  1. Notify Your Insurer: Inform your insurance company about the storm damage. Be prompt and precise in your communication.

  2. Share Documentation: Provide the photos and detailed assessment you've gathered. This evidence is crucial for a smooth claim process.

  3. Claim Number and Adjuster Assignment: Your insurer will give you a claim number and assign a field adjuster. The adjuster will check the damage to determine the settlement amount needed to restore your home to its pre-storm condition.

  4. Stay Informed and Responsive: Keep track of your claim status and be available for any extra information needed for the adjuster's assessment. Prompt responses can expedite your claim process.

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Selecting the Right Contractor for Storm Damage Repairs


Pick a reputable contractor that has experience with doing insurance claim work.  Professional storm damage contractors are not only experienced in insurance mitigation, but they're also efficient, prompt, and helpful in reducing the overall stress that happens after your home gets damaged.

roofing estimator inspecting a cornice return

Most experienced contractors coordinate directly with your insurance provider as well, reducing the added stress of ensuring that everything is streamlined so as not to leave any information off the claim.

insurance claim denied

Moreover, just be wary of scammers or door-knockers. Many service providers are not certified and seek to benefit from vulnerable homeowners after a storm. If any service provider asks for payment upfront, please don't hire them to restore the damage for you.

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Enhancing Storm Damage Preparedness for Your Home


To prevent future storm damage, invest in a great professional service provider. Choose one that uses the best products, latest tools, and installation methods to repair your home – especially when it comes to roof repair.


tarped roof


You can even have emergency measures in place for the next storm as follows:


  • Invest in sandbags before the next storm arrives to prevent water from accumulating or coming indoors. You can even cover your windows and doors with a tarp to prevent seepage.

  • Check for mold in warm and damp conditions a few days after the storm and have it removed right away. Mold outbreaks can be hazardous to health if left untreated.

  • Protect your circuit breaker by having an impermeable structure built over it. This will prevent water leaks from coming in contact with the circuit breaker and increase the risk of fire.

  • Regularly trim and prune your trees. If you have trees that are prone to being uprooted and falling, have them removed by a landscape service provider.

  • Invest in a high-quality submersible water pump – this can help you draw out large amounts of water that may have seeped into your home during a storm or heavy rain spell.

Taking these proactive measures can significantly reduce the impact of future storms, keeping your home and family safer. Let's discuss the DIY repairs next.

Taking Action After Storm Damage: Your Roadmap to Recovery


Dealing with storm damage can be overwhelming. Tackling a storm-damaged roof yourself could be dangerous. But with the right approach, you can navigate through the aftermath with confidence. Swift action is key to preserving the structural integrity of your home and ensuring the safety of your family.

Here’s your post-storm action plan:

  1. Keep Essential Contacts Handy
  2. Act Quickly
  3. Emergency Tarping Services
  4. Stay Informed and Prepared

Preparing yourself and staying informed will be your best defense. With this roadmap, you can handle storm damage and ensure the safety and longevity of your property.

Professional Storm-Damaged Roof Repairs


By knowing what to do after finding storm damage, you can save unnecessary costs and worry. Acting fast and not letting the repair and restoration process get delayed can play an important role in maintaining the structural integrity of your property.

This is exactly what you want if you wish to keep yourself and your loved ones safe.

A young family of four standing in front of a cartoon home drawn on a backdrop, image of flowers, clouds, and the sun too.

 If you have questions about insurance related to roof replacement, we'd recommend that you check out our article: Insurance Roof Replacement Questions You Should Know

Our family at RoofCrafters has 30 years of experience tackling storm-damaged roofs. If you live in one of our many service areas and would like to have one of our estimators come check your roof. Click the button below and we'll see you soon!

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Kevin Mills

My name is Kevin Mills, and I am the lead estimator for RoofCrafters’ Tampa division. I’m originally from Michigan, and I enjoy hunting, fishing, and spending any free time outdoors. What I’m most passionate about, though, is helping business owners and homeowners alike achieve their roofing goals, all while providing a seamless customer journey.