Does Filing a Roof-Damage Insurance Claim Affect My Premiums?

Roof damaged by falling trees. Homeowner will need to make a roof-damage insurance claim

 

The unthinkable has happened. Your roof was damaged by a falling tree, high winds, or a barrage of hail. If you’re like many homeowners, you might be reluctant to file a roof-damage insurance claim to help defray the cost of the repairs because of the fear of sparking a rate increase from filing a claim.

Thankfully, there’s no evidence that filing one claim for substantial damage will cause your premiums to soar. Understanding how roof insurance works, the link between making claims, and spikes in annual premiums is key to easing those concerns. Check out all the effects filing a roof-damage insurance claim has on homeowners insurance rates.

The Link Between Making a Claim and Rising Premiums

Filing one roof-damage insurance claim won’t raise your premiums, however, multiple claims over a few years could cause rates to increase. Independent Insurance Agent, David Shaffer notes that most homeowners file a claim every 10 years. Homeowners who file claims frequently are more likely to raise flags with underwriters. If you file multiple claims, you could be slapped with surcharges or policy cancellation. Try to avoid filing a claim for a small repair that you can handle yourself. 

Common Reasons for Rate Increases

As mentioned earlier, filing multiple claims over a few years could increase your rates. However, there are other factors that affect your rates. Other common factors include:

  • A dip in your credit score
  • Rising crime in your area
  • Increased likelihood of natural disasters
  • Changing your policy to opt for increased coverage

Tips for Filing a Roof Damage Insurance Claim

Before filing a roof-damage insurance claim, the first thing you should do is check your homeowner’s insurance policy. Understanding what is and isn’t covered will help you avoid unexpected costs. Also, understanding your policy will help you judge whether it is better to file a claim or handle the repair on your own. Use these tips to guide you:

  • Check out your policy exclusions: Policies typically exclude specific items and repairs from coverage. For example, they might not cover damage caused by improper roof maintenance, damage to certain roofing materials, or roofs over a certain age.
  • Note whether you have repair-only coverage: Some insurance policies only cover repairs to damaged roofs. If the damage to your roof is so expensive you need to replace the entire roof, you may have to pay for it yourself. 
  • Weigh the cost vs. your deductible: The deductible is the amount of money that you need to pay on any homeowners insurance claim. If you have a $500 deductible and $5,000 worth of damage, filing a claim may well be worthwhile. On the other hand, if you have a $1,500 deductible and $1,000 of damage, it wouldn’t make sense to file a claim.
  • Talk to your agent first: Before you schedule any repairs, call and speak to your insurance agent. It is necessary to work with your insurance company to understand your policy fully and avoid unexpected costs. 

Whether you file a claim or deal with the repairs out of pocket, having a roofing contractor you can trust on your side can make all the difference. Make sure the work is done efficiently and correctly by choosing trusted, expert Orlando roofing contractors like Carroll Bradford Roofing, Florida’s premier family-owned construction solutions provider.

Sources:

https://www.uphelp.org/pubs/claim-or-not-claim%E2%80%A6that-question-david-shaffer

https://www.ioninsurance.com/home-insurance/7-reasons-why-your-homeowners-insurance-rates-increase/

https://www.angieslist.com/articles/roofing-insurance-claims-avoid-these-pitfalls.htm

https://www.insurance.com/home-and-renters-insurance/filing-a-homeowners-insurance-claim.html

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