Roof Damage: Should I Call a Roofer or My Insurance Company First?

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Roof Damage: Should I Call a Roofer or My Insurance Company First?

Roof Damage Should I Call a Roofer or My Insurance Company First

If you’ve sustained damage to your roof from a hail storm or any other severe weather event in Colorado, you want to take care of it as soon as possible. However, knowing where to start to get your roof damage taken care of can be difficult.

For example, should you contact your roofer or your insurance company first? What kind of information does each need to be able to take care of your storm damage? What can you do to speed up the process?

While you should take time to familiarize yourself with what your insurance covers since every homeowner’s insurance policy is different —there are some general best practices you can follow to ensure your roof gets back in good shape.

Don’t Delay Your Roofing Project

You typically have one year from the date of damage to file a homeowner’s insurance claim to take care of the hail storm damage to your roof. If you fail to act in time, your claim will most likely be denied, and you’ll have to cover the repair costs yourself.

But more than that: waiting too long to repair storm damage can lead to other serious damage like leaks, mold, rotting wood, and damage to your home’s roof system.

Verify Damage and Document Damage

After a storm, do a thorough walk-around of your home and property and see if you notice any issues. As soon as you’re aware of any damage, document it with photos and notes on any issues that you are seeing. Take note of when the storm occurred as this is required if you plan on filing an insurance claim.

Remember, there’s no need to get on top of your roof to get this damage! Roofing is a notoriously dangerous job, and getting on your roof introduces an added risk. Any photos or videos you can take from the ground or in your attic (if it’s safe to get in your attic) will be sufficient.

Contact a local roofing company to schedule a professional roof inspection. This is the best way to verify the type of damage and determine if there is damage and the extent of the damage. Your roofing company will provide an estimate and discuss solutions based on your situation.

Contact Your Roofing Company

You can reach out to your insurance company before contacting a trusted, local roofer, but in most cases, it’s best to get in touch with a roofing company first.

This is for a few reasons:

  1. Roofing companies get very busy after storms, and you need your repairs taken care of ASAP.
  2. Your roofer will perform a thorough inspection to confirm any damage and provide a detailed estimate. You never know what kind of damage is hidden from plain sight!
  3. You’ll want to select the roofer that you want to work with to schedule a professional inspection and provide an estimate. This will provide an accurate scope of work that can be provided to your insurance company. Most insurance companies require an estimate before they’ll review a claim and send out an adjuster, so reaching out to your roofer will save time.

File Your Homeowner’s Insurance Claim

After you’ve had a roofing professional perform an inspection and list the necessary repairs, it’s time to file a claim with your homeowner’s insurance company. Depending on your insurance company, you may be able to complete the claim online. Your roofing professional can help you navigate the insurance claim process to make sure that you have all of the information you need to file your claim.

Your roofing contractor is your partner in getting your home back in good shape. Your insurance company will most likely send out an adjuster to verify the damage. Have your roofing contractor meet with your adjuster. Adjusters aren’t roofers, and they usually don’t have the experience necessary to identify all damage and provide an accurate claim estimate. Once your claim is submitted and approved, work can begin and you’ll have a new roof in no time (hopefully)!

We’re Ready to Take on Your Roofing Project

No matter where you are in the Denver Metro, Front Range, Colorado Springs, or Northern Colorado area, we can help make your roofing insurance claim painless and efficient. J&K Roofing is a full-service roofing company and we work with insurance companies on insurance claims every day. We understand how to navigate this process and are always available to answer any questions.

Call us today at 303-425-7531 to schedule your free inspection and get your project started.

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What is a Roof Supplement and How Does it Help You?

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What is a Roof Supplement and How Does it Help You?

What is a Roof Supplement and How Does it Help You?

Consider this hypothetical scenario: you know your roof has some damage from hail and fallen tree limbs after an intense storm. You contact your homeowner’s insurance company, and they send an adjuster out to take a look at your roof and approve your claim.

Adjusters aren’t roofers, and they usually don’t have the experience necessary to identify all damage and provide an accurate claim estimate. So, in this hypothetical situation, your adjuster approves a claim that is a couple thousand dollars short of the actual estimate for the work.

What happens next? How do you address this shortfall so you’re not on the hook for the outstanding amount?

You’ll need a roof supplement. This article will detail what a roof supplement is, how to know if you need one, and what else goes into this essential piece of the roofing process.

What is a roofing supplement?

A roofing supplement is a standard piece of a homeowner’s insurance claim, and more often than not, they’re expected. For example, an adjuster might not account for the correct amount of shingles needed to repair or replace your roof, or maybe they overlook other essential elements like your roof flashing or roofing underlayment.

Your roofing contractor will inspect your roof and provide an estimate to repair any damage. That estimate—including any additional materials or labor necessary to complete your project—gets sent to your insurance company, which may send the adjuster out again to ensure the repairs are covered.

What causes a roofing supplement?

Supplements are somewhat expected for a reason we can all understand: we’re human, and mistakes happen! Adjusters don’t always get it right; sometimes, a project requires more material or labor than expected.

Other reasons you might have a roofing supplement include unforeseen code updates or permits, or maybe your roofing contractor discovers additional damage once the project begins. For example, they might pull back your shingles and find damage to metal flashing, or your roof deck may need to be reinforced to accept the new shingles or roofing material.

The bottom line is that a roofing supplement isn’t a bad thing; it’s necessary to repair your roof properly.

How do I know if I need a roofing supplement?

Both your insurance adjuster and your roofing contractor should walk you through the damage they see and the required repairs. If you’re aware of any other damage that hasn’t been addressed—like broken gutters or windows, or damaged siding—you’ll likely need a supplement.

Since most homeowners aren’t expertly trained to look for damage, you’re at the mercy of your roofing contractor. That’s why it’s so important to vet your roofing company properly; you need to work with a company you can trust.

What will my roofing contractor do to supplement my roofing claim?

Your roofing contractor is your partner in getting your home back in good shape. They will provide an accurate scope of work, including pictures of the damage, a copy of code requirements that might impact the estimate, and anything else your adjuster asks for to approve your insurance claim.

How can I help make my claim go more smoothly?

You can do a few things to speed up your claim process and make it go more smoothly.

For starters, take a look for yourself! Make a list of the damage you see from the ground and document it with photos to show your adjuster and roofing contractor.

You can also ask your roofing contractor to be present when the adjuster is performing their inspection. That way, they can chat and make sure everything has been addressed.

And don’t be afraid to speak up and ask questions! Doing so can save you time and prevent unnecessary back-and-forth before your claim is approved.

Choose a Roofing Contractor With Supplement Experience

Go with a roofing company that has experience with roofing supplements. They will know how to get your claim approved for the full amount needed to complete your project.

J&K Roofing has a project management team and a supplement team. We supplement as soon as possible, utilize software for exact measurements, know what kind of pictures and videos will best support your claim, and will compile all of the documentation required to complete your claim.

Get in touch with us today by completing this form or calling 303-425-7531.

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5 Clues That a Storm Chaser Is at Your Door

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5 Clues That a Storm Chaser Is at Your Door

5 Clues That a Storm Chaser Is at Your Door

It’s predictable: a heavy storm rolls through your area, bringing with it strong winds, rain, and hail, and within a few days, you have a stranger knocking on your door to tell you about the damage that’s been done to your roof. Don’t fall for it!

Due to the number of hail storms that hit Colorado, it’s consistently one of the top 5 states for hail claims. That means it’s also one of the most popular states for roofing storm chasers to frequent, trying to make some fast cash. While most contractors are honest and reputable, others are not. In fact, the highest number of consumer inquiries to the Better Business Bureau of Denver-Boulder involve selecting reputable roofing contractors.

This article will help you understand what a storm chaser is, how to identify them, and why you want to avoid them.

What Is a Storm Chaser?

When we mention storm chasers, we’re not talking about weather trackers who travel in heavy vehicles collecting data about significant weather events. We’re talking about predatory roofing companies that follow storm patterns to take advantage of uninformed homeowners.

These companies tend to show up within 1–2 days after a heavy storm, and they often come from out of state. Their goal is to convince you that you have hail damage to your roof, and they often exaggerate the damage—or make it up entirely—to get you to hire them.

Why You Should Avoid Storm Chasers

Roofing storm chasers are usually running a sort of scam. In particular, will often make false promises, insist on full payment upfront before work is completed, and sometimes even create damage where none occurred. But no matter how long you’ve owned your home or how much experience you have as a homeowner, storm chasers will still try to get your business.

Many times, storm chasers:

  • Offer deals and prices that seem too good to be true
  • Lack adequate training to properly complete a roofing project
  • Disappear as soon as possible—sometimes without completing the work

Simply put, if you hire a storm chaser, you may be stuck paying for unnecessary repairs to your roof. An inexpensive roof is no bargain if you have problems, especially if your roofing contractor is no longer around to honor the labor warranty.

Clues for Identifying Storm Chasers

While some storm chasers may be able to finish the work they agree to, many just want your money and don’t prioritize your project. Here are five clues that a storm chaser is at your door.

1.    They Knock on Your Door and Immediately Say You Have Storm Damage

The fact that they came to you without you initiating the interaction is a bad sign. They often exaggerate damage to try to scare you into hiring them. If you ask them questions, they may try to skirt around a true answer and leave you feeling like you haven’t been heard. Beware of unsolicited offers. Most scams begin with a contractor who “just happens to be in the area” and notices your roof or home has the appearance of needing repairs from the outside. Roofing scams typically increase in frequency after a powerful storm, so stay alert.

2.    They Say Your Insurance Company Sent Them

One of storm chasers’ favorite tactics is to suggest that they’re working with your homeowner’s insurance company. Don’t fall for this trick! You can always follow up with your insurance company to double-check how legitimate the claim is. A reputable roofer will provide you with an estimate and documentation of any damage and help you navigate the process with your insurance company.

3.    They Use High-Pressure Sales Tactics, Limited-Time Offers

Storm chasers come into town with the idea that they’ll make a lot of fast money from roofing projects. They often use high-pressure, time-sensitive sales strategies to rope you into an agreement. Go with your gut—if they give you a bad feeling, you can politely decline and send them on their way.

4.    Their Information Is From Out of State

Check their license plates to see if they have out-of-state tags. Look at their contact information—is their phone number local? Do your research to see where they’re located and what kind of reviews they have. Review their information online at the Better Business Bureau. While there’s no statewide registration or licensing requirement in Colorado, all roofers should be licensed as a business and insured. Click here to see if a roofing business is licensed and can perform work in Colorado.

5.    They Request Advance Payment, Often in Cash

It’s common for a legitimate roofing company to ask for partial payment upfront, but the bulk of the payment should come after substantial completion of the project. If they ask you to pay the full amount before any work begins, they’ll likely take the money from you and never return to work on your roof.

We’re Ready for Your Project

Storm chasers will always be around in Colorado, but hopefully, you know enough now to spot the red flags and avoid becoming another victim of their shady practices. Be sure the company you choose is reputable, and local.

Get in touch with us today (303-425-7531) to schedule a free inspection and talk through your roofing needs.

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Understanding Your Homeowner’s Insurance: What’s New in Colorado?

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Understanding Your Homeowner’s Insurance: What’s New in Colorado?

Understanding Your Homeowner's Insurance: What's New in Colorado?

Spring weather has officially hit Colorado, with strong winds, rain, and yes—hail. That means it’s time to double check and make sure your home is ready for whatever Mother Nature is about to throw your way.

You might already be aware that hail damage is one of the most common causes of homeowner’s insurance claims in Colorado. But do you know how to reduce the risk of significant damage to your roof and your home? Taking these steps can help you know when to file a Colorado homeowner’s insurance claim—or prevent further damage after a significant storm.

Be prepared for anything.

Storms are unpredictable, and they often don’t leave much time for you to prepare before they hit. But with that said, being prepared for what to do after hail storms and other severe weather can help you with next steps that can prevent further damage.

Have a good idea of what’s going on with your house. Is the exterior of your home in good enough shape to protect you from strong hail storms? Is your attic properly ventilated? Have you had a seasonal roofing inspection performed?

If your answer to any of these questions is no, you’ll want to contact your local roofing company for assistance in repairing any damage before a weather event rolls in, and directly after a major storm. They can help by regularly inspecting your roof to assess any issues that may cause further damage, and work with you directly after a major weather event to have your home exterior inspected and have your entire exterior scope of work completed.

Do you know what to do after a significant weather event?

Coloradans experience frequent damage from hail and wind storms, so it’s essential to familiarize yourself with how to deal with storm damage.

What does your homeowner’s insurance policy cover?

If you haven’t taken a look at your homeowner’s insurance policy in a while, now is the time to do so. No one wants to file a homeowner’s insurance claim for hail damage. It can be a cumbersome process, and if you’re unfamiliar with your coverage, you may not get everything you need taken care of.

Due to the high likelihood of severe storms in this state, homeowner’s insurance in Colorado is often more expensive. You might not remember every significant hail storm that hit us in recent years, but you probably know when your insurance rates may have increased as a result.

Review your homeowner’s insurance policy to get a better sense of the protection level it provides. Not only is it good to be familiar with what’s in your policy, but you may be eligible for loyalty or other discounts that could save you money.

Watch out for roofing scams.

More and more scammers are preying on unassuming homeowners, especially after a significant storm. Unfortunately, Colorado is known for roofing scams directly after a hail storm.

Be aware of storm chasers and other roofing scams that may claim to have your best interest in mind. Know the red flags to look out for and what to do if you encounter a scam.

Contact a local, reputable roofer who will not pressure you and can explain and discuss any damage to your property.

Take care of yourself and your family first.

J&K Roofing can help you navigate the insurance process. As an experienced, professional full-service roofing company, we’ve worked with most insurance companies and will advocate for you to get the entire scope of work covered to improve your home’s roof and exterior. We are experienced in this process and can take the headaches out of coordination and documentation. 

We’re here to help you, and our expert team will perform a professional roof inspection to make sure your home is in good shape and ready for upcoming storms.

Contact us today to set up your free inspection and have your questions answered—we’re ready to help!

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Choose a roofer that is going to be around and will stand behind the work they do.

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