Deciding to file a roof claim isn’t necessarily as easy as learning that your roof has storm damage. There are several factors that can affect your decision.
The Layout of your roof can be an important factor in deciding whether to file an insurance claim on your roof. Here’s what you need to know before filing a claim.
Your Roof Layout Matters
Sometimes wind or storm damage will affect only one side of your roof. Perhaps your home is located where the prevailing winds always come from the same direction.
It’s possible in that case to have significant damage to one slope of the roof and no damage whatsoever anywhere else. How your roof is ventilated can be an important factor is in determining whether to file a claim for that damage.
Roofs can be complex in their design, but the most basic gabled roof comes together at the peak to form a ridge.
If there is a vent along the top of your roof, then technically speaking the two slopes are separate from one another. That’s because ridge vents work by cutting a strip at the top of your roof to allow air to flow through the ridge vent itself.
Insurance companies view that as two separate roofing sections. If the front slope has damage and the back slope doesn’t, they may only cover the front slope. It might still be worth filing a claim, but that would depend several other factors as well.
For example, if your roof is relatively new and the damage is limited to a few shingles, you might be better off opting to repair the roof on your own.
The cost of repair might not be that expensive and may not even be enough to reach your deductible.
Your insurance company might approve the claim, but you wouldn’t benefit unless the loss exceeds you’re deductible.
Other types of Roof Vents
However, if your roof does not have ridge vents, then the front slope of the roof and the back slope of the roof are connected. The underlayment in this type of roof overlaps and both slopes are considered one continuous roof.
Filing a claim in this case might make since because even if only the front is damaged, you can’t properly tear off the front slope without damaging the back.
Your insurance company is obligated to resolve the storm damage, and the only way to resolve the damage is to replace the front and the back of the roof.
Gabled roofs are the simplest example of this, but hipped roofs present a similar situation. If the slopes actually wrap all the way around your house, then its considered one continues roof.
Damage on one side will end up getting all the other slopes covered as well.
If there are vents on any of the ridges of the hipped roof, then the each slope would be considered separate from the others.
Ask your roofer, to help you identify the layout of your roof and how that might affect your insurance claim.
Roofsimple offers ideas, not advice. Any insurance or financial decisions should be discussed with a trusted financial adviser or licensed insurance agent.