Your roof is your home’s first line of defense from the natural elements such as rain, hail, snow, and debris. Even a small crack can cause extensive damage, so it is a good idea to conduct routine roof checks. This helps keep your home and family safe, while also ensuring you have documentation of professional maintenance to provide your insurance policy. Here are tips to keep in mind when it comes time for your roof check.
Plan to inspect your roof at least once a year. This allows you to stay ahead of repairs as you note possible damage. Conduct additional checks after extreme weather such as hail, snow, or thunderstorms. Depending on the weather in your climate, your roof may be subject to more possible damage from natural elements. Your home insurance policy does not cover “wear and tear” repairs or those caused by age, so it is vital to complete this maintenance as part of your homeownership.
Do a Visual Check First
The first step in your inspection is to do a visual check from the ground. Walk around your home to check for any signs of possible damage. Here are a few things to look for:
- Missing or broken shingles
- Warped, blistered, or curled shingles
- Asphalt shingle grit in gutters
- Cracked caulk
- Rust spots
- Moss or lichen on rooftop
- Sagging spots
- Darkened ceilings or interior water damage
If you spot these signs, it is time to get the problem addressed immediately. If left unrepaired, these concerns can cause major structural damage to your home. Because they were part of the wear and tear that homeowners are expected to maintain, the cost will come out of your pocket and not your insurance policy.
Hire a Professional
It can be tempting to perform a “DIY” home repair and save a few dollars, but this is not worth the risk. Hire a roofing professional who has experience fixing roofs and working on a ladder. They can address the concerns you identified, along with inspecting the full roof to determine if more work is needed. Confirm that the roofing repair company also has their own insurance updated, and ask what warranty they offer on their work.
Understand Your Homeowner’s Insurance Policy
If your roofing professional determines that your roof is in need of a total replacement, you may be facing an extremely high cost. In the case of damage due to age or normal wear and tear, the repairs will most likely not be covered under your homeowner’s insurance policy. However, if a tree branch has fallen onto your roof and caused a leak, this may be covered.
Conducting annual roof inspections is a vital way to keep your home and family safe. Keep all your records of any updates and maintenance completed by licensed and insured professionals. For questions about your homeowner’s policy or additional roof insurance coverage, speak with your local agent today.