How to handle roof repairs after severe weather damage
When it comes to our homes, we take every preventative method and precaution possible to ensure security, durability and energy efficiency. There is a lot we can do to keep our homes in tip-top shape and prepared for just about anything. Yet despite our best efforts, the one thing for which we can never truly prepare is what nature might do to our homes.
When natural disasters strike, we have no control over what might happen. One of the most commonly stricken parts of our homes that endures the heaviest damage from severe weather is our roofing.
While the task of cleanup and repair directly following a natural disaster can seem overwhelming, there are some steps you can take to ease the process. Having a good plan can go a long way towards lifting some of the anxiety. The following four steps outline the best course of action if you find your roofing disastrously damaged in the aftermath of severe weather.
Although damage assessment seems like an obvious first step, it is often quite unexpectedly overlooked by homeowners trying to pick up the pieces after a natural disaster. The instinct for many people in this situation is to immediately reach out to insurers and contractors right away. This mistake usually manifests itself as homeowners find they are unable to give these contacts any credible information regarding the severity of damage and/or potential costs.
Instead, take some time to inspect, assess and document the damage done to your roof. Give your home a thorough inspection, take pictures, make notes and do your best to make itemized cost estimations for any potential repairs and/or replacements. Once your assessment is compiled, it’s time for some ‘band-aid’ style damage control.
This step is also essential, yet often bypassed by many homeowners after severe roofing damage. Try to apply as many temporary fixes as you can to your roofing before anything else. This is also something you can do while you are also conducting your assessment in the first step. Even a bucket on the floor under a leaky spot will help.
Doing whatever you can to improve minor damages along the way might not offer long-lasting solutions but it does a tremendous amount for improving you and your family’s quality of life while awaiting repairs, and delivers substantial peace-of-mind.
You’ve compiled a sound assessment with notes, pictures and cost estimations, and you’ve patched up some things you could manage to fix quickly. Now it’s time to contact your insurance agency.
It is understandable that everyone will have a variable experience with insurers over claims for substantial disaster damage to a home. However, this step is absolutely crucial because it should alleviate much of the financial burden (depending on your policy and insurance agency) you might otherwise endure. After all, this exact event is the reason you carry insurance on your home.
Furthermore, your diligent compilation of damage assessment and cost estimations in earlier steps will now play a crucial role in your conclusive dealings with your insurance agency. At this point, you should now have a financial budget you can work with, sourced through your insurance claim. Now it’s time to put all of this planning into action and recovery.
Shop for Contractors
We’ve reached the final phase at this point. You are armed with solid damage assessments and cost estimates. You know the extent of your problems and the remedies needed to solve them. You’ve fixed everything you could on your own in short order. You have funds on deck from your insurance agency to apply proper repairs or replacements for your roofing.
It’s clear from the start of these steps that, in the end, you’ll need to hire professionals to repair or replace your roof. But because you’ve followed the proper method, you have the high ground when shopping for a roofing company to get the job done. Much of the purpose of the previous steps is to empower you with all the armaments you need to properly scout out a roofing contractor.
Too many folks fall prey to roofing contractors who take advantage of ill-prepared homeowners who skip all the proper steps and jump straight into this final step.
But because you prepared properly, you will not suffer that fate. For you, it’s entirely the opposite. You will shop for roofing contractors with confidence, you won’t base decisions on any sense of urgency and you will have full visibility of your needs and your budget.
Heath Hicks is a roofing expert, contractor and blogger with AVCO Roofing