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How Do You Get Insurance to Pay for Your Roof Replacement?

December 31st, 2021 | 7 min. read

How Do You Get Insurance to Pay for Your Roof Replacement?

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You have homeowners insurance to protect your roof. But it only protects against certain things and leads to a replacement under the right circumstances. 

This means your insurance company won’t pay to replace your roof just because it’s old. They also won’t approve a claim just because your roof is leaking. 

So, how do you get insurance to pay for your roof replacement?

For over 30 years, the team at Bill Ragan Roofing has helped homeowners understand how homeowners insurance works for them and their work. Because of this, we’re going to help you understand when your insurance company will pay for a roof replacement. 

We’ll start this article by getting right to how you get insurance to pay for your roof replacement. After that, you’ll learn 5 things you need to know about getting insurance to pay for your roof replacement. 

How do you get insurance to pay for your roof replacement?

Your roof must have storm damage caused by extreme weather for your homeowners insurance to pay for a replacement. This extreme weather could be straight-line winds (aka damaging winds) during heavy thunderstorms, hail storms, snowstorms, or tornados.

shingles missing from wind damage(Shingles missing from wind damage)

They’ll also cover any roof damage from fallen tree limbs caused by strong storms. If there’s extensive damage to your roof, then there should be no question that they’ll pay to replace the roof. 

tree falling on roof

However, it depends on what the insurance adjuster finds during their inspection if your roof is worthy of a full replacement. As long as the roof damage is caused by extreme weather, you should be able to get insurance to pay for your roof replacement. 

5 things to know about getting insurance to pay for your roof replacement

Now you know the reason why your insurance would pay for a roof replacement. If you think your roof qualifies for an insurance replacement, you’re ready to reach out to your insurance company.

But before you do, there are a few things you need to know about the process. Below are 5 things to know about getting insurance to pay for your roof replacement. 

1. The process to get insurance to pay for your roof can be long

Some homeowners have the misconception their roof will be replaced quickly after filing a claim. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case. 

The truth is, getting insurance to replace your storm-damaged roof is a long process. Below is a list of some of the steps leading up to an insurance roof replacement:

  • You’ll call your insurance company 
  • They send out an adjuster for an inspection
  • If approved by the adjuster, they’ll write up a claim
  • You’ll find a reputable roof contractor
  • They’ll go over the claim and provide you a list of what needs to be supplemented (if applicable)
  • You'll send the supplemented claim back to the insurance company for approval  
  • If approved, you'll get your entire roof replacement covered by insurance

The steps above aren’t the exact process and vary based on your insurance company, policy, and even your roofing contractor. This list just demonstrates how much goes on behind the scenes once you file an insurance claim and that each phase of the process takes time.   

Knowing this from the beginning helps you understand why it’s taking so long to get your roof replaced through your insurance company. 

2. Be aware of storm chasers in your neighborhood

I guarantee after a strong storm comes through your area, you’ll have people walking around your neighborhood knocking on doors. This by itself isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but you need to know a couple of warnings about storm chasers. 

Storm chasers are out-of-state companies that come in immediately after a storm, undercut local roofing company prices, get your money, and move on to the next storm-hit town. They don’t care about local codes or if they even properly install your roof.

And after they’re done with your replacement, I guarantee problems will show up and they won’t answer your phone call. To avoid this happening to you, check out 5 Tips to Avoid Getting Scammed by a Storm Chasing Roofing Company

3. Only an insurance adjuster can approve your roof damage insurance claim

The first thing you should do is call your insurance company when you think you have a claim. After giving them all the relevant information, they’ll either send out an insurance adjuster or tell you to call a roofing contractor for an inspection. 

If they tell you to find a roofing contractor, they’ll be able to inspect for storm damage and let you (and the insurance company) know the roof is damaged. Now, you might think your claim will automatically be approved when this happens. 

Unfortunately, that’s not the case. The insurance adjuster is the only one who can approve a roof damage insurance claim. 

Your roofing contractor can take pictures of storm damage as proof and advocate for you if they think you have it. But at the end of the day, the insurance adjuster has the final say, even if the roofing contractor is 100% sure you have a claim.

4. Don’t sign any paperwork until your insurance claim is actually approved

The roofing industry doesn’t have the best reputation, and honestly, some of it’s warranted. But a big reason for the reputation is because some roofing companies try to strong-arm and scare homeowners into signing something before they’ll inspect the roof. 

If a roofing company tries this, they're trying to lock you into a contract that gives them the right to your roof before your claim has even been approved. This means you already sold them your roof without even knowing if they’re a reputable roofing company.

That’s why it’s important never to sign any paperwork until your insurance claim is approved. You shouldn’t even let a roofing contractor on your roof until it’s approved, unless your insurance company tells you to find one in your area to inspect it. 

Even if you're panicking about storm damage or a door knocker tries to scare you, don’t sign anything until your insurance claim is approved. 

5. Find a roofing contractor who has experience working with roof damage insurance claims

Once your claim is approved, it's up to you to choose any local roofing contractor you want. When looking for one local to your area, it’s important to hire one that has experience working with insurance claims. 

Hiring a roofing contractor who regularly handles insurance work knows the insurance claim process, how to read your claim, help you supplement anything missing, and how to do the work in compliance with your insurance company. They can also save you from inadvertently committing insurance fraud

Unlike retail replacements, there’s no reason to get multiple quotes to find the lowest price when you start looking for a roofing company for an insurance claim. So, find one you trust that has experience handling claims and go from there. 

The homeowners insurance process to replace your roof

Now you have the 5 things you need to know about getting insurance to pay for a roof replacement. If you think your roof has damage after a storm, you're ready to file an insurance claim. 

But before reaching out to your insurance company, don’t you want to dive a little deeper into the claim process? While knowing what we already covered is great, this article doesn’t really touch on the actual claim process. 

That’s why we wrote another article breaking down the process and what happens when filing an insurance claim to replace a storm-damaged roof. 

Since 1990, the team at Bill Ragan Roofing has educated thousands of homeowners in Nashville and surrounding Middle Tennessee areas about everything insurance-related. Our job is to advocate for you and be a guide throughout the entire insurance claim process. Plus, we do high-quality work, backed by a lifetime warranty. 

To learn what happens when you file a claim and the process that goes with it, check out Homeowners insurance: the process to replace a storm damaged roof.

storm damage checklist

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