If your roof has recently been damaged by a major storm, you may be at a loss where to begin with the insurance claim process. Filing a roof damage insurance claim may seem daunting, but we are here to help. We have worked on countless commercial property claims over our years in business. We move quickly and smoothly through the claims process, allowing the property owner to get the storm damage fixed and get back to business.
It’s important that you act fast if your commercial building has experienced storm damage. Even if it doesn’t appear obvious, severe weather can cause substantial damage to your roof. Wind can cause damage to the adhesive seal and break the water-shedding surface, and hail can cause bruising to the shingles which allows water to infiltrate over time.
Thankfully, Storm Damage Specialists are one of the best roofing companies when it comes to insurance claims and we are here to help. Contact us as soon as possible after you experience storm damage. After our inspection, we will inform you if we believe a roof damage claim may be your best option. If you decide to file a claim, we will guide you through the process to make sure everything is done correctly and you get paid properly.
Here are some common questions that property owners have after roof storm damage:
Who do I call first?
Your first call after you experience storm damage to your roof should be to a trusted roofing contractor. It’s critical to document any roof storm damage through a complete inspection done by a licensed contractor. Not only will this process provide you with necessary information regarding repairs or replacement needs, but having an experienced professional who is familiar with the roof insurance claim process can help make the entire experience more efficient from start to finish.
Calling a reputable roofing contractor can prove to be an invaluable asset when it comes to filing an insurance claim. The roofer will develop a full, objective report before the insurance adjuster arrives onsite. This gives you leverage and helps avoid potential problems during their assessment. You’ll be empowered with this critical information leading into the adjuster’s arrival on site–eliminating potential problems and ensuring maximum coverage from your policy.
Time is of the essence when it comes to filing a claim for roof damage. Most insurers require that you submit your paperwork within 24-48 hours in order to protect yourself from further damage and potential higher costs associated with repairs. Thankfully, most companies provide an online form on their website which simplifies the process, but if needed you may contact an agent directly for personalized assistance.
Finally, remember that being a commercial property owner comes with numerous responsibilities, one of which is ensuring your tenants (if applicable) are kept safe and informed about building issues.
Do I need to take pictures? What pictures does the insurance company require?
Now’s the time to break out that camera and channel your inner photographer. As a commercial property owner, it’s critical to document any and all roof repairs with pictures for future reference. Photos should note things like missing shingles and other damage from high winds, hail damage, impact from a fallen tree or other debris, and damage to gutters.
Insurance adjusters often take pictures which are intentionally tailored to support their needs. Insurance companies can, and often do, present an incomplete narrative through their own pictures. This is why it is critical to cover your bases by taking your own pictures, ensuring nothing gets left out or misrepresented due to any potential bias.
What is the insurance company’s goal? What kind of attitude should I expect?
First, it is important to understand that insurance carriers are for-profit organizations, meaning they aim to generate revenue from the premiums paid by policyholders. Insurance carriers also view claims in terms of their financial impact on their business. They will assess the total cost of the claim, which includes not only the cost of repairing or replacing the damaged property but also the cost of investigating the claim and paying out any compensation to the policyholder. In some cases, insurance carriers may decide that it is more cost-effective to deny a claim rather than approve it, especially if the cost of the claim is high.
In some cases, the insurance company may require multiple estimates or hire third-party adjusters to investigate the claim on their behalf. If the carrier finds evidence that the roof damage was caused by something other than the loss event that the insurance company covers or that the policyholder was not forthcoming in their claim, they may deny the claim. It is important that you are familiar with your insurance policy, noting your deductible and the specific events for which you’re covered.
Do I need a roofing contractor that is familiar with insurance claims?
A roofing contractor with expertise in commercial property insurance can provide invaluable assistance. From providing detailed documents of your repair, to minimizing replacement cost, and locating rebates and incentives that save you money, they help simplify the process. They will create accurate paperwork for an insurer that will insure you get the right timely insurance payment. An expert roofer will also know how to mitigate future roof damage so that the chances for a future insurance claim is reduced or eliminated entirely.
At Storm Damage Specialists, we will be there for you through the entire roof claim process, no matter what it takes. Inexperienced companies tend to do the bare minimum and move on, leaving you dependent on whatever the insurance company decides. In more complicated cases, most clients give up and pay out of pocket to fix the damage themselves long before the claim is settled. We are patient, keep our clients informed, and hold your carrier accountable to fulfilling their end of your insurance policy. Read about one client we helped with their difficult insurance claim.
What is the insurance inspection process?
When you contact us, our team will conduct a meticulous and thorough inspection within 48 hours. We will visually assess the exterior components such as siding, roofing, gutters, and any potential spot where water could get into your building. We will inspect the interior of the building in search of drywall that is sagging or at high risk of collapsing. If needed, we will do a temporary repair to cover any exposed areas and prevent further water damage. If we notice tree branches that could potentially be problematic during the repair, we will make note of those as well.
Our goal is to provide you with the best repair solutions possible—keeping safety and long-term efficiency in mind. We recognize that a new roof can be costly, so we strive for repairs whenever feasible, though it may only buy you 5-10 years before needing a new roof. If we determine that replacing is more beneficial long-term or safer overall, that will be our recommendation. After a thorough assessment of your building’s needs, our team will deliver an extensive workup and estimate outlining all options available.
What timeline should I expect? What if my roof damage is an emergency?
Most claims can be negotiated and settled within a few months. Sometimes, an insurance company will delay their decision, but eventually, they decide on an actual cash value, write the check and close the case rather painlessly. Most move quickly and smoothly through the roof damage claim process, allowing the property owner to fix the damage and get back to business.
Severe storms do not care about what is convenient for your schedule. The Storm Damage Specialists call center is available 24/7 to deal with emergency roof damage situations. The vast majority of the time, we can be at your location within an hour, even in the middle of the night. We will come out, take care of any immediate needs, and schedule a follow-up inspection. This can usually be conducted first thing the following day.
What are the next steps?
Don’t hesitate to contact the Storm Damage Specialists team. Our professionals are available 24/7, ready to inspect and safeguard your property against further damage with an emergency repair if needed. We’ll arrive promptly at your building for a complimentary quote including all of your potential options—no commitment necessary!
Our team of experienced roofers is dedicated to helping you get the proper insurance coverage for your storm damage. We will take care of filing all claims and make sure they’re documented correctly so that both you as our customer and your insurance company have peace of mind knowing repairs will be done right! No matter what course of action you decide upon, rest assured we are here to address any concerns along the way–putting ourselves into your shoes as if it were our own building at stake!
Give us a call, or fill out our contact form, and we will be on our way to help you deal with your commercial roof’s storm damage.