Howling winds, pelting rain and hail, snapping tree branches — riding out a storm inside your home can be a frightening experience. On the other hand, a mild rain fall, a light thunderstorm or moderate snow fall may seem totally harmless. Yet, a single straight-line burst of wind may be enough to uplift shingles, sling debris and projectiles around and topple trees and power lines.
You never know. That’s one of the reasons why you should inspect your roof and home after every storm. Here are three more reasons to be prepared, inspect and how to follow through.
Prevent Additional Damage
If it’s evident that your home has sustained damage, it’s important to act fast to prevent additional damage. Roof impacts from hail, flying debris and tree branches can damage shingles and make your home susceptible to water leaks. Here’s what to do if your roof has sustained impacts, no matter the severity:
- Attic: Take a look inside your attic for water leaking from the decking. Look at and feel the attic insulation to see if it is wet anywhere. If you see water or water stains anywhere in the attic, your ceilings or walls, call your roofing contractor right away.
- Ground: Never climb onto your roof. It’s too dangerous to risk your or a loved one’s health and well being. Inspect your roof from the ground using binoculars. You’re looking for shingle damage, such as uplifting, curling, missing and/or torn shingles.
- Impacts: If there is debris, tree branches or a tree on your roof, it’s obviously in peril. If there was a hail storm, look for pock marks or dimples on your roof shingles and siding.
Establishing an Accurate Insurance Claim
Following a storm, a comprehensive home inspection should be performed by your trusted roofing contractor in conjunction with your homeowner’s insurance inspector. You can be prepared before and after the storm, too:
- Policy: Review your homeowner’s insurance policy now, rather than after the storm does its damage. Do you have enough coverage?
- Filing: File your claim ASAP. If storm damage occurs to your home in the middle of the night, don’t wait until morning. Call your insurance company to report it at your earliest and safest convenience.
- Documenting: Document storm damage by taking pictures and video. Remember, safety first. Don’t put yourself in harm’s way, and look out for felled power lines.
- Patience: Don’t rush deciding what to do. The better prepared you are, such as having a history of working with a good roofing contractor, the easier things will flow. If you aren’t happy with the claim from your insurance company, file a complaint with the Minnesota Department of Commerce.
Free Professional Roof Inspection
Most roofing contractors will offer free roof inspections following storm damage. However, be wary of so-called free inspections by unscrupulous companies. Once you’ve signed a “waiver,” you’re obligated to use that company should the insurance company accept their damage assessment.
Establish a relationship with a reputable roofing contractor now. Have your roof, attic and home inspected, photographed and videotaped. You can’t predict or do anything to prevent the path and wrath of storms, but you can be prepared.
If you need the professional services of a trustworthy roofing contractor to inspect or repair your roof, or to work with you and your insurance company, contact the professionals at Welter Construction today.