Will Homeowners Insurance Cover Cedar Roof Damage?
Has a recent storm or other natural disaster damaged your cedar roof? Dealing with the aftermath of a damaging storm can be a particularly stressful time for a homeowner. You must ensure that your property is still safe for your family, and you need to navigate the process of making insurance claims.
If your cedar roof has been damaged, will your homeowners insurance cover the roof repairs? Or will you need to shoulder the cost on your own?
Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Roof Repairs?
Homeowners insurance exists to protect you against losses to your property's value that are beyond your control. As such, your homeowners insurance policy may cover damage to your cedar roof, depending on the cause of the damage.
Types of Roof Damage Covered by Homeowners Insurance
Storms and natural disasters are often covered by homeowners insurance. Under homeowners insurance dwelling coverage, typically covered perils are:
If your roof has been damaged from a tree that fell during a windstorm or by hail, your homeowners insurance will likely help cover the cost of repairs.
Under personal property coverage, your belongings may also be covered if they are ruined as a result of a peril covered by your homeowners insurance policy. This coverage may help cover repairs or replacement of your personal belongings.
If you have a cedar roof on an unattached structure that has been damaged, your homeowners insurance may cover the repairs under other structures protection as long as the damage is a result of a covered peril. Unattached structures on your property may include detached garages or sheds.
Before your homeowners insurance will help cover repairs for a damaged cedar roof, you will probably have to pay a deductible. Your policy also limits what is covered. You may also have a policy that excludes hail or windstorms, meaning your insurance will not cover damages from these perils.
Are Cedar Roof Leaks Covered by Homeowners Insurance?
Your homeowners insurance may cover a leak in your cedar roof if the cause of the leak is covered. If the leak is due to a covered peril, such as fire, wind or hail, then your homeowners insurance may cover the repairs for the roof leak.
If the leak is instead due to wear and tear or lack of maintenance, your homeowners insurance policy will probably not cover repairs for the leak. Conducting regular cedar roof inspections can help you avoid leaks and learn more about the condition and age of your roof.
What Roof Repairs Are Not Covered by Homeowners Insurance?
Along with natural wear and tear from age, roof coverage will also generally not cover damage from earthquakes, flooding or mudslides. This coverage will need to be purchased separately. For example, if you live in an area that is prone to flooding, you may want to purchase separate flood insurance.
When it comes to homeowners insurance, roof repair will likely be covered as long as the damage was sudden and accidental. If your own negligence or the regular wear and tear have caused the damage, then your homeowners insurance is not likely to cover your roof repairs.
How Do I Claim Roof Damage on Insurance?
If a storm or natural disaster has damaged your cedar roof, how do you go about filing a homeowners insurance claim for roof damage? Follow these steps to claim roof damage on your homeowners insurance policy:
1. Immediately Examine Your Cedar Roof for Damage
Following a major storm or natural disaster, immediately examine your cedar roof for damage. If you spot leaks or other visible damage, schedule a roof inspection.
Even if you don't immediately notice any roof damage, you may still want to have your roof inspected. An experienced roofing professional can identify issues that go unnoticed by the average homeowner.
Review your homeowners insurance policy and check with your public adjuster to determine if there are requirements about how long you have to make covered roof repairs after a disaster or storm.
2. Look for the Types of Cedar Roof Damage
Wind can blow off coverings like shingles and cause leaks. Hail can result in small imperfections that gradually become larger or place added pressure on a roof. Do what you can to mitigate potential problems with your cedar roof before repairs can be made. Examine for mold or water damage. Place tarps to cover your cedar roof.
3. Document Your Property Before and After a Storm
Document the details of your property after you purchase it and after any significant renovations. Pictures or video of the property before a storm make it easier to assess the damages after a storm. Snap pictures and take videos to document the condition of your property and backup your files so you don't lose them.
Take photos of your cedar roof regularly, along with the rest of your property. Taking pictures is particularly important after maintenance is performed on your property and after a major disaster, such as wind damage or a hurricane. Heavy winds can cause severe long-term weaknesses that aren't always immediately apparent. Take these pictures and videos from multiple angles and ensure that the device you use also includes the date and time that the photo or video was taken.
By documenting everything along the way, you'll help the process of making an insurance claim go much faster. The more details you can provide, the more evidence you will have to back up your claim. If you work with a roofing contractor, they can point out any weak spots and help you document the damage thoroughly, along with determining how extensive the damage is.
4. Collect This Information Before You Make a Cedar Roof Insurance Claim
To make a roof claim with your homeowners insurance, you may need to provide photos of the damages and a written explanation of the repairs that need to be made. You'll also need to provide a description of the event that caused your cedar roof damage, along with the date and time of the event.
5. Contact Your Insurance Provider About the Roof Damage
If your cedar roof has sustained extensive damage, you will want to reach out to your insurance company right away. Many insurance providers place limitations on how long you can submit a claim for property damage after a major storm or disaster, so you check with your insurance company if your policy covers the damage as soon as you can.
6. File Your Roof Claim
File your claim over the phone, in-person or through your insurance provider's website. Make your claim as soon as possible to avoid missing any deadlines set by your insurance carrier. You'll then schedule an appointment with the inspector who will survey the damage to your roof.
How to Make Sure Your Homeowners Insurance Provider Accepts Your Roof Claim
After a storm has damaged your cedar roof, you'll likely be in a hurry to have the roof repaired. You'll want to ensure that your insurance company pays your claim so these repairs can be made promptly.
Your insurance provider may be able to withhold depreciation or some of your claim payout to ensure you use the money to cover the repairs on your roof. The insurance company may do this because sometimes if a roof is not a total loss, homeowners use the payout on something other than the roof repairs. If your insurance company withholds depreciation, you will receive that money after the roof work is complete.
Follow these tips to improve the chances that your insurance provider accepts your claim:
Work with a reputable roofing professional: Working with an experienced roofing professional can ensure that the estimates for your roof repairs are accurate. You can use this information when you make a roof claim with your homeowners insurance provider.
Provide evidence of damages: Being able to provide your insurance company with sufficient evidence of your roof damages and repair needs may also increase the chances of your claim being accepted. You can use photos or videos to provide evidence of damages.
What Happens If Your Roof Insurance Claim Is Denied?
If your roof insurance claim is denied, do you have other options, or are you out of luck?
Why Your Insurance Company May Deny Your Roof Claim
Why might an insurance company reject a roof claim? If your claim has been denied, the rejection was likely due to one of these reasons:
Non-covered event: Review your homeowners insurance policy so you know exactly what is and what is not covered. If earthquakes aren't covered in your policy, for example, you can't make a claim for earthquake damage.
Filing delay: If you delay filing a claim for too long and you miss the deadline, your claim may be rejected. Familiarize yourself with your insurance company's statute of limitations so you know how much time you have after a storm or disaster to make a roof claim.
Lack of routine maintenance: Homeowners often fail to adequately maintain a roof. To the claims adjuster, if you had scheduled regular maintenance for your roof, you could have avoided the damage. Routine maintenance includes cleaning the gutters and removing debris and moss.
Inadequate coverage: Filing a claim for damages in excess of your coverage limits may result in a denied claim.
Any of these reasons could result in a denied cedar roof claim.
Steps to Follow After Your Claim Is Denied
What should you do if your claim is denied? If your insurance company rejects your claim, follow these steps:
Review your policy: Examine your policy again to determine if you overlooked something and to make sure you thoroughly understand what is included and excluded from your policy.
Review your denial letter: Review your denial letter to determine if the claims adjuster made an error.
Review your documentation: Check all the evidence you presented via photos and videos, along with the receipts you kept from the contractors who performed the roof repairs.
Reach out to the adjuster if you find errors: If you find that an error has been made, reach out to the adjuster and notify them of the error. Refer to the rejected points of the claim and provide documentation that supports your argument.
Consider Other Options
If your insurance claim is denied, you may want to request a re-inspection. Select a contractor willing to work with the adjuster from your insurance company. Try to choose a company with expertise in storm repair. You may also want to consider hiring an insurance claim attorney or securing financing for the repairs.
Even if your roof insurance claim is denied, you should not attempt to make the cedar roof repairs yourself. Instead, leave the roof repairs in the hands of professionals who are experienced in inspecting, repairing and restoring cedar roofs.
Get Cedar Roof Repairs From Cedar Roof Coatings
Do you need cedar roof repairs? We offer various services at Cedar Roof Coatings for your cedar roof. Our services include:
Repairs: Have animals or insects damaged your cedar roof? Is your roof missing tiles? Does your ceiling show signs of water damage? When a cedar roof is damaged, the integrity of the roof can be significantly impacted. We offer a large range of cedar roof repair services to improve the integrity of your roof, including repairs for vents, flashings, ridge caps and valleys.
Preservation: We also offer cedar roof preservation. We clean your cedar roof and remove parts of the surface that have sustained damage. We remove debris, moss, fungus and mold to restore your roof to its beautiful color. We use products that will protect and rejuvenate your roof and add years to its lifespan.
Inspection: Among our services, we offer a thorough cedar roof inspection. During our inspection, we'll look for any issues, such as animal damage, infestation, overhanging trees, clogged gutters, signs of wind or hail damage and the quality of the roof's installation and materials. By determining your roof's useable lifespan, we can inform you whether your cedar roof should be repaired or restored.
If you need cedar roof services in Westchester County, New York, or Fairfield County, Connecticut, contact us at Cedar Roof Coatings today to tell us about your roof and schedule your cedar roof repairs.