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Home ownership: What to do after your roof is damaged by hail

Ask three basic questions to determine if a roofer is a fit for you.
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If you live in Northern Colorado, there’s no doubt that you’re familiar with hail storms. There’s usually two types of responses to hail. The first is the homeowner who immediately calls his insurance agent and schedules a time for an adjuster to come out the next day. The second is the homeowner who assumes that if her roof isn’t leaking, it must be okay. Neither of those is necessarily the best route to take, and we’ll quickly explain why.

Usually, the best thing you can do is get a general assessment from your neighbors. Often, you can get a good idea from speaking with them about the extent of damage they received. If the storm brought small hailstones that exploded upon hitting the ground, then your home is most likely okay. The soft hail doesn’t do much damage to a roof. However, if the hail was hard enough to cause damage to cars parked outside, that’s usually a good indication that you need to call a local roofer to request a free inspection. There are many reputable Longmont roofers to choose from and performing a quick Google search is usually the best way to find one.

Take a little bit of time to read some reviews and make sure to check out your prospective company’s websites. You want to ensure that the company you are choosing fits what you are looking for in a local roofing contractor. There are tons of good ones out there and finding the perfect match is worth a few extra minutes of online research. Lead sites like Google and the BBB are excellent resources.

The next step is to call and vet your potential roofers. This is often scarry for homeowners, but it really shouldn't be. When you get them on the phone, just ask them these three easy questions:

  1. Are you local?
  2. What kind of experience do you have with insurance carriers?
  3. Are you able to handle additional trades like painting, windows and gutters?

Asking these three basic questions will make your life much easier as a homeowner, and here’s why. First, you want a local company who is familiar with local codes and local products. It won’t cost you anything extra — and most likely will save you money — supporting local business and they will be better suited for your needs.

Secondly, it’s very important that your chosen roofing contractor is familiar with working directly with the insurance carriers. Usually the carriers will not provide you with enough money to bring your home back to its original condition in their first estimate. Since most homeowners are neither knowledgeable or skilled at working with the adjusters, this is something that should be handled by a competent roofing contractor. In the end, you will save a lot of time and money by choosing a company who is skilled in supplementing homeowners’ claims.

Finally, make sure your roofer is more than just a roofer. The roof always gets the most attention in a homeowners claim because it’s the most expensive and most problematic. However, it’s important to remember that you are making a homeowners claim, not just a roof claim. Your entire home needs to be inspected for damage. Most often this includes gutters, paint, and windows. However, it can also extend to garage doors, solar panels and even landscaping. Hire a contractor who can handle all the trades so you don’t have to!

Overall, taking charge of your homeowners insurance claim after a hail storm really isn’t that difficult. Like anything else, if you take just a little extra time to educate yourself and choose a contractor who you feel comfortable with, you’ll get the results you are looking for!