When your home has been hit by a storm, dealing with the aftermath can be discouraging and even frightening. Sometimes, even in best-case scenarios, storm damage is unavoidable. While dealing with insurance companies, weighing storm damage repairs, and even dealing with the possibility of additional damage from following storms can be quite overwhelming, we’ve put together five very important tips to do and a couple of things not to do after a storm has damaged your home.
Inspect Your Roof and Home Exterior
Any time after hail storms or strong wind-driven storms (with or without rain), you should walk around your property to inspect your roof, gutters, siding, and windows. Strong winds can easily damage roof shingles or blow them away entirely. Hail impacts are more difficult to spot from the ground. If hail caused damage to patio furniture or vehicles, you can count on hail damage to your roof. Take pictures and video for documentation of any storm damage to have available for your insurance company.
Inspect Inside Your Home
Even if storm damage isn’t visible or apparent outside your home, storm damage may be visible from inside your home in unfinished attics and rooms directly beneath the roof. Take a look inside your attic, but only if you feel safe doing so. Attics can be dangerous places with nails poking through the roof deck. Look for signs of water infiltration on timber and attic insulation. Further, inspect interior ceilings and walls for water spots.
Call a Trusted Roofing Contractor
Call a trusted roofing contractor right away following storm damage or if you suspect there could be storm or hail damage. Bear in mind that roofing contractors are very busy immediately following storms of destructive force. The best advice is to establish a working relationship with a roofing contractor now rather than after storm damage occurs. If there is widespread storm damage in your area, for example, roofing contractors simply may not be able to take on new customers due to their workload.
Contact Your Homeowners Insurance Provider
If there is significant damage to your roof and home exterior, your insurance company should be involved. Keep in mind that once an insurance claim is filed, your insurance company isn’t necessarily your ally in regards to fully compensating you for storm damage. This is when a good and experienced roofing contractor is your trusted friend. The roofing contractor you ultimately choose should have extensive experience working with homeowners insurance companies.
Prevent Additional Damage
It’s quite common for additional damage to occur to a home following the initial storm damage. For example, a wind-driven storm peels off roofing shingles and exposes the underlayment and decking. A few days later, a strong rainstorm leaks through the damaged roof causing water damage inside the home. Many homeowners insurance companies may pay for the initial roof damage but not the water damage from a later storm because steps weren’t taken to protect the roof and home.
Don’t Hire Storm Chasers
You may already know that the term “storm chasers” refers to people who go into neighborhoods that have been hit by strong storms or hail. Storm chasers go door to door preying on homeowners, who are already in a very stressful situation due to storm damage, and offer “half-price discounts” or some other sales tactic, and then ask for a deposit. Any reputable roofing contractor will perform a free roofing estimate following storms, and the contractor will be compensated by your homeowners insurance provider and not solicit money from you.
Don’t Climb Up Onto Your Roof
It’s important to inspect your roof and home following powerful wind-driven storms and hail storms. It’s even more important to perform this inspection with both feet on the ground. For your own safety, don’t ever attempt to climb up onto your roof. Leave that to the professional roofers. After all, roofing remains one of the most dangerous jobs year after year.
If your home has been hit by storm damage, DO CALL Welter Construction right away at (763) 780-6007 for a free roof inspection! We’re local, fast and efficient, and we’re highly rated!