Roofs and Hail Damage
by Steve Vacha
One of the most important areas we inspect are roofs. Roofs do not last forever. Mother Nature takes a toll on our roofs in the form of hail, wind, and her beating sun. With our weather becoming more intense and damaging though out the country, insurance companies are starting to do business differently. Deductibles are up, and insurance companies are becoming more selective as to what they will insure. This can have a large effect on insurance company’s clients (home buyers).
What most people would consider an insurable roof several years ago might not be today. More insurance companies will now put a ladder on the roof and inspect for damage, which was not always done in the past. Sometimes, what looks like a solid roof from the ground, can end up having significant damage when inspected up close. Depending on the size and style of roof, replacement can cost from $3500 to over $25,000. It is important for buyers to know if the house they are considering has a roof that might not be insurable.
We periodically inspect homes now that still have hail damage from last year’s storms. This can be due to the owners having never contacted their insurance company, their insurance adjuster turned down the claim, or the owners never completed the repair with an insurance claim’s money, which in some instances is insurance fraud.
If the owner never called the insurance company, it is usually a simple call that is needed. If the adjuster turned down the claim, the owner can call the insurance company to have another adjuster re-re-assess the roof (there are times hail damage is not evident after the storm, but will become evident after a number of months). In some cases it would be beneficial to have the buyer call their insurance company to verify the roof is insurable.
The main objective is to make sure the buyer is purchasing a home that will keep them dry and protect their belongings. Good, basic shelter.