As a homeowner, you’ve most likely encountered that feeling of dread after any severe weather. Did your home sustain damage? Is it bad or can you wait to fix it? How much will this cost you? When you do discover damage to your roof after a storm, but you aren’t sure whether a roof replacement is necessary, you put “file an insurance claim” at the top of your to-do list.
Contrary to popular belief, though, filing a claim may not be necessary at all. There are other financing options available to cover the cost of a roof replacement or repair without going through the sometimes complicated claims process. It’s important to know when a claim is necessary and when to utilize other options to safeguard your financial future.
When to File a Claim
In some instances, it makes sense to file a claim with your homeowners insurance company. If the cost to repair the damage or replace the roof substantially exceeds your deductible, filing a claim may be in your best interest. If the damage is significant or amounts to a total loss of property, filing a claim is the best way to cover the cost of a quality repair or replacement. This is, after all, what homeowners insurance is for!
If you’ve never filed a claim before, or if this would be your first claim in at least three years, consider filing a claim. Insurance companies take your claims history into account when determining your premium and whether to cover you and your home at all. If you file too many claims, that’s a risk many insurance companies do not want to be responsible for, even if you’re on time with premium payments.
When Not to File a Claim
Sometimes, filing an insurance claim for a roof repair or replacement is NOT in your best interest. It can be smart to avoid any unnecessary claims to prevent premium increases or insurers deeming you “too risky.” When the cost of the roof repair or replacement does not exceed your deductible, there is no benefit to filing a claim. You’ll need to pay for minor roof damage out of pocket if it is less than your deductible.
Roof damage that is due to maintenance issues or normal wear and tear is generally not covered. It is the homeowner’s responsibility to regularly maintain the home, including the roof. So, any damage that can be attributed to simple neglect or that could have been prevented with an appropriate maintenance routine will not be covered. Think of it this way: if your roof is already damaged or worn down, and then it suffers heavy damage after a summer thunderstorm, insurance can deny any claim you file and cite the reason as simply not maintaining your property correctly.
The last reason not to file a claim may be the most important. As mentioned above, it’s best to avoid filing a claim if you’ve filed one in the last three years. Multiple claims in a short span of time due to repeated roof damage can tell an insurance company that you are simply too risky to cover. Insurers use your Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (CLUE) report, which contains up to seven years of claims history, to assess risk. If your history suggests that you’re too risky, an insurer could significantly increase your premiums or cancel your policy, even if the cause of claims is accidental, like storm damage.
Alternative to Filing A Claim
When you need a roof replacement or repair, consider your financing options before filing a claim. This can preserve your claims history, help you avoid premium increases, and retain your coverage for more significant losses in the future. There are several benefits to finding another way to finance your roofing work.
Financing Your Roof Repair with Hedrick
Here at Hedrick Construction, we are committed to not just providing high quality roof replacements or repairs but helping families sustain financial stablility during the process. With that in mind, we have partnered with Enhancify to provide financing options for your next roof repair, so you won’t have to turn to your insurance company.
Enhancify allows you to see your financing options without negatively impacting your credit score. We accept credit scores as low as 550, and no equity or appraisal is required for personal loans. Simply fill out the application for any type of roof repair or replacement, and see your options within minutes. Request up to $200,000, and receive your financing within 2–3 business days.
Maintain Budget Flexibility
Financing options can allow you to spread the cost of the work over time. This makes it more manageable, allows greater flexibility in your budget, and lets you avoid the financial strain of paying upfront.
Retain Emergency Funds
Financing can help you save your “rainy day” fund for health bills, auto repairs, or other unexpected expenses.
With more financial stability, homeowners are more empowered to select higher quality roofing materials that are more durable and last longer, resulting in long-term cost savings. Quality materials reduce the need for frequent repairs and replacements, even after inclement weather. They can also help your property retain its value longer and even increase its market value in the short term.
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