Summer storm damage can quickly ravish your home's siding and roofing. When it comes to fixing the damage, you'll need to make sure that the roofing contractor you hire not only gets the job done correctly, but also communicates effectively with your insurance adjuster.
Here's some advice for maximizing your insurance claim and keeping your project under budget.
Submitting Your Claim
Insurance adjusters and contractors use similar software programs to calculate how much a major home repair is likely to cost. The key to maximizing your claim is documenting the exterior storm damage, leveraging the lifespan of the existing roofing/siding, and making sure that your contractor clearly communicates with your insurance adjuster.
- Documentation: After the storm has cleared your area and it's safe to go outside, the documentation process should begin. Snapping pictures and capturing video of the most damaged sections of your roof or siding is pretty obvious. However, you should attempt to document all exterior storm damage you find, even if it only looks minor. An easy way to make sure you don't miss anything is to capture video of your home's exterior as you walk around it. You can also call your siding and roofing contractor to help you spot damage that might be less obvious.
- Comps: Storm damage rarely strikes one home in a neighborhood. Your roofing and siding contractor can network with other contractors to share storm damage information from other properties nearby. The more comps your contractor can find, the stronger your claim will be with your home insurance company.
- Matching: Many home insurance policies have provisions that stipulate what type of repairs are covered by your policy. For instance, if a relatively small portion of your roofing or siding suffers exterior storm damage, your policy might only cover repairing the most significantly damaged sections. This can be problematic, however, if your roofing and siding contractor can't find perfect matches for your siding or roofing shingles. Depending on the age of your roofing and siding, the manufacturer might be out of business or no longer make that type of siding or roofing shingle. If this is the case, your siding and roofing contractor can argue for a larger claim to replace all of your roofing shingles or siding. It's critical for your roofing and siding contractor to have this information before you settle on a bid or submit your claim to the insurance company.
Staying Under Budget
Although home repair projects rarely go exactly to plan, an experienced roofing and siding professional can anticipate any complications in their bid.
- Materials: The roofing and siding materials used by your contractor should be negotiable. For instance, if you're planning on selling your home in the near future, it might not be as important to select roofing and siding products rated for 20 years. Although many roofing and siding contractors often pitch their customers on choosing the highest-rated products, these options might not fit your budget. It's a good idea to ask your siding and roofing contractor for multiple bids based on different siding and roofing products.
- Labor: The manual labor need to re-side or re-shingle a home is likely to be the most expensive part of the process. One way to make sure that your siding or roofing project stays under budget is to ask for a detailed explanation of the labor costs included in the contractor's bid. For instance, how many people will be on the job? What will each job include? Can hiring a private contractor to handle the waste removal save on labor costs? All of these questions are worth asking your siding and roofing contractor. If they can't answer your questions to your satisfaction, consider giving the job to someone else.
For more information about repairing exterior storm damage, contact a company like Select Exteriors.