We’ve been talking about insurance claims a lot over here recently on our Learning Hub and we’re back with more useful information that can help you through your roofing woes. Having to get roof work done is often a dreaded process by homeowners and that is usually due to them not having enough knowledge on the topic. When informed and working with a reputable roofing company, getting roof work done is a relatively straightforward process.

Insurance claims are where things can get tricky so just like everything else, it’s important to be informed about the process and know what steps need to be taken. Today we will be talking in-depth about how the age of your roof can affect your insurance claim should you find yourself with roof damage as well as different insurance types to consider.

How long do roofs last?

There is no one set lifespan for all roofs. Instead, the lifespan of a roof depends on what type of roof you have specifically and what materials it’s made of as well as their quality. Some other factors that impact the lifespan of a roof include the underlayment and how well the roof itself was installed originally. Here are some general lifespan ranges for specific roof types to give you a better idea.

Three-Tab Asphalt Shingles

This is the most common residential roof type as well as the most affordable roofing option. Three-tab asphalt shingle roofs typically last 15 to 25 years when maintained properly.

Wood Shingles

While less common and oftentimes used for aesthetic purposes, on average these last up to 30 years when installed and maintained properly.

Metal Roofs

There are several different types of metal to choose from when having a metal roof installed. The quality and thickness of the metal you choose will affect the lifespan of your roof. Metals that are on the thinner side can last anywhere from 20 to 25 years while quality metal can last up to 50 years or more.

Slate Roofs

Sale tile roofs are more expensive but they last a very long time. These types of roofs can easily last for 50 years and at times up to 90 or more.

There are several more types of roofing materials available but these are to help give you a better idea of the age range of different roof styles.

Actual cash value vs. Replacement cost value insurance

There are two main ways that most insurance companies decide to cover roof damage and those are Actual Cash Value and Replacement Cost Value. It’s important to make sure that the policy that you want is offered by your insurance company as each company is different.

In general, you can assume that the older your roof is, the less your insurance will cover. This is especially true for those that go with the actual cash value option because it takes into account both the depreciation cost of your roof as well as the deductible. Then, after those two costs, the actual cash value of your roof will be paid. The replacement cost value is different because it does not deduct any depreciation cost. Instead, you will just pay your deductible and your insurance company will cover the exact replacement cost of your roof at the time of the claim. This just goes to show that sometimes having a lower premium doesn’t always mean it’s a better option for you.

Before choosing an insurance option it is always best to do your own research as well as speak to an insurance agent to get another opinion and have any questions you may have answered. 

It is also important to take into account the area you live in. If you live in an area known for storms such as the midwest where tornadoes are more prevalent, you have a higher chance of experiencing roof damage which means a higher chance of having to file an insurance claim.

New vs. Old  Roofs and Filing a Claim

I know we just got done telling you that the older your roof is the less your insurance will cover most of the time, but that isn’t always the case. If your roof is towards the end of its life but experiences substantial roof damage due to storms or other natural causes, your insurance is far more likely to pay for an entire roof replacement. This is because the older roof materials are not as easy to manipulate making it very difficult to repair sections. Older shingles lose their flexibility over time and trying to repair them or the surrounding area can cause further damage down the line. Since repairing an old damaged roof puts your roof at risk of being damaged further, an insurance company can not cover that repair. Instead, the answer is oftentimes replacing the entire roof and starting from scratch.

When people experience damage to their newer roofs it’s a different story. You may think it is a good idea to file an insurance claim as it seems like everything will be covered, but that isn’t always the case. Since newer roofs are still fresh, the materials or shingles used still have their mobility and can be repaired easily without the threat of causing additional damage. When this is the situation, you may be better off not filing an insurance claim. If you do file a claim and it gets approved you may run the risk of not even reaching your deductible price. Instead, it is best to just hire a reputable licensed roofing company with good reviews to come and repair the damage out of pocket. We recommend only filing a claim on a new roof when there is a large amount of damage present.

Wrapping it up

Now that you know more about various insurance options as well as when it is best to file a claim and when not to, we hope you feel more comfortable with the process should you find yourself going through it. Though the age of a roof plays a big factor in the status of your insurance claim, there are other things to take into account such as the amount of damage, what type of damage your roof has, and more.

If you are interested in learning more about the roofing and insurance claim process we suggest checking out our Learning Hub where we post new roofing content every single week. If you are wanting to learn some tips and tricks on navigating the insurance process for roof damage, we suggest this article. We believe that it is important to educate yourself before hiring anyone and our learning hub is a great resource to reference. 

We are here to help!

At LibertyRoofworks we have over 20 years of professional roofing experience under our belts with services ranging from full-on roof replacements to repairs and routine inspections. We believe in keeping our clients informed throughout the entire process and will provide you with regular updates as well as answer any questions you may have along the way. 

Insurance claims are something we are very familiar with and are happy to help you through the process as well as advocate for you throughout the process should any miscommunications occur.

Are you in need of any roof work? Contact us today and we will be happy to send out one of our licensed and professional roofers to perform a roof inspection and guide you towards the next steps. Having roof work done is never stressful with us!

Frequently Asked Questions About Insurance Claims

We just gave out a lot of information and it’s normal to have questions. Here are some commonly asked questions we receive about roof damage and the insurance process.

Q: I think I may have roof damage, what should I do?

A: The first thing you want to do is hire a reputable roofing contractor to come out and perform an inspection. They will perform a thorough inspection of your roof and inform you of any damage found as well as suggest the next steps you should take. If filing an insurance claim is necessary, contacting your insurance company would be the next step.

Q: Can I file multiple insurance claims for roof damage?

A: While you technically can file multiple insurance claims, we strongly suggest not doing so. If you file more than two or so claims within a five-year time span you will see an increase in your home insurance premiums. That is why it is so important to only file a claim when absolutely necessary.

Q: How soon should I file a claim after noticing substantial damage?

A: We always suggest filing a claim or contacting a roofing company right away. Roofing damage should be addressed as soon as possible to prevent further damage from occurring which would cost you even more money in the long run. Depending on the damage it can also be a safety concern. Nothing good comes from waiting and while it’s not always practical, it should never be put off.

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