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The Roof Warranty: What They Cover and What You Need to Know

Monday, March 20th, 2017

Your roofer or the manufacturer of roofing supplies may provide a warranty to cover future damage. These warranties can be very useful, but they have limits! Here’s what you need to know.

The details can vary

Not all roof warranties are the same. In fact, they can cover very different things, which is why it’s so important to read the details and pay attention to all the fine print.

A common example is the difference between poor workmanship and faulty roof materials. Manufacturer warranty options only cover repairs if the roof materials are at fault, but not if the materials were installed incorrectly; in other words, warranties don’t cover any contractor mistakes, and you won’t know until you actually ready the contract.

Bottom line: Don’t just sign warranties without understanding what they cover. When in doubt, ask.

Other important problems may not be covered

Roof warranties tend to only cover direct repairs and replacements. Other issues, while related, won’t be covered. For instance, assume that you don’t have enough vents on your attic due to a roof project that covered several vents up. The next winter, your attic has a big problem with condensation, boards start to warp and patches of mold appear. If you see any of this damage, check with Findlay Roofing for immediate repairs for these serious issues, but don’t expect a previous roof warranty to cover them, because the condensation isn’t directly related to the new roof.

Roof Repair

You can void your warranties

Yes, roof warranties can be voided by certain situations. While most void restrictions are boilerplate, they can also vary a little. Common activities that void your warranty include:

  • Overroofing: Installing shingles on a layer of older shingles will usually void product coverage.
  • Structural changes: Say you buy a satellite dish and install it on your roof with a few screws and half an hour of work. Unfortunately, that projects also voided your coverage: Structural changes of any kind tend to have this impact.
  • Specific events: Certain events may not be covered, such as hailstorms or fires, depending on the warranty and region.
  • Wear and tear: Damage over time is not usually affected by warranties or any type of insurance, since it’s a natural and unavoidable occurrence.

The quality of the roofing company matters

As a general rule, be wary of warranties offered by companies that have only existed for a couple years or less. Brand new companies and contractors are on shaky ground. There is no guarantee they’ll be around in a decade when you want to invoke that coverage. Warranties are far more reliable when offered by experienced companies.

Not all costs are covered

Warranties will cover some repair costs, but not others. Roof removal, disposal of old parts, flashing and direct labor costs may not be covered.

Warranties may or may not be transferable

Transferable warranties can be passed on to a new owner, a very important consideration when buying or selling a home…or if you may do so in the future.

Remember that the warranty you have may not be what you might think. Read yours carefully to see what’s covered, and if you’re getting a new roof, know what to look for in the fine print.

Photo source: Flickr

Roof Insurance: How Does It Work?

Thursday, August 25th, 2016

When rooftops get damaged, it’s natural for homeowners to start wondering about their roof coverage and policies. After all, no one really talks about “roof insurance.” Is your roof covered? How much will you have to pay out of pocket? These are the questions, and we’ve got the answers:

Homeowners Insurance

Your roof should be covered under your homeowners policy. This is the same policy that covers your home if theft or fires occur. Homeowners policies cover both the belongings inside your home as well as the home structure itself. This includes your roof.

Sometimes people aren’t sure if they have homeowners insurance or not. Requirements for homeowners policies and what they cover vary from state to state or from agency to agency. However, chances are good that if you are paying a mortgage— you have a policy. Lenders typically require it. Homeowners policy payments are often bundled into your mortgage payments, which is why you may not be making a separate payment.

Take a look at your homeowners policy or visit your agency’s website to learn more about making a claim. It’s important to also talk to your roofing contractor about your policy and what is required.

Repair and Replacement

So, what exactly does homeowners insurance cover when it comes to your roof? Usually, you’ll have two choices: Repair and replacement. Which one your policy covers depends on several factors. Here are a few of the most important:

  • The Fine Print: As we mentioned, policies do vary a bit. The parts of your roof that are covered may be narrowly defined by your policy. This isn’t usually a major concern, but it always pays to read the small print.
  • Damage: Generally, immediate damage caused by external events will be covered by your homeowners policy. This refers to storm damage, events like house fires, and similar catastrophic problems. However, damage caused by old age or an issue that could have been prevented with changes or maintenance will not be covered. Inspectors will examine your roof before making this decision. This can be particularly complex when it comes to leaks, as this Florida redditor learned.
  • Age: The age of a roof can be important when it comes to coverage. For an older roof (say, older than 10 years) a policy may only cover repairs or part of the costs, while for a new roof the policy may cover the full cost or a replacement option. This is closely connected with the depreciated value of your roof.
  • Liability: If you are at fault for roof damage because of negligence or mistakes, your policy probably will not cover repairs.
  • Materials: This is another odd factor, because it can depend on location and fire hazards. Bottom line: Some materials may only have partial coverage or no coverage at all. Common materials (like shingles) will most likely be fully covered.

Photo Source: Flickr

Findlay Can Answer Roof Insurance Questions — Let Us Help!

Friday, January 30th, 2015

Worried about roof insurance covering your new roof? We can help! Here are several questions you should ask your insurance company when planning a roof replacement, and what role Findlay can play in making the process as painless as possible.

Will you cover my new roof?

This is the first and obviously the most important question when inquiring about insurance claims for new roof projects: Will your homeowners insurance cover the cost of a new roof? The details are key. Typically roof insurance will cover damage from a sudden event, like a bad windstorm. But if your roof is simply old, your claim will probably be denied. So check your policy, give your insurance agent a call, or look up coverage information online.

What paperwork do you need from me?

Insurance companies will require a variety of paperwork for your house. If Findlay has already created an estimate for your new roof, provide that for your insurance agent. You may also need to provide paperwork for past roof work in addition to basic claims forms. Ask us for help if you do not know where to find the information that your insurer wants.

What is your estimate for my roof?

Typically, roof insurance agents will investigate your roof on their own, which is why it is important to immediately arrange an inspection after your old roof is damaged. After the inspection, the agent will produce an estimate for replacement that they will use when processing your claim. If you disagree with this estimate, do not hesitate to call us. We may be able to submit countering information if you want to request a new estimate from your agent.

Do you need to know the age/condition of my roof?

Sometimes the age and condition of your roof will dictate how much your insurance company will pay for replacement, known as an ACV (actual cash value) policy. Ask your insurer if you have an ACV and what documents you can provide to prove the age and condition of your roof.

Where do I send my deductible?

You will need to pay a deductible before your coverage will activate. Findlay will not participate in any fraud that avoids this deductible. Ask your insurance company when and how to pay it.

How will payments for the new roof work out?

Sometimes your insurer will pay for your new roof in one lump sum, and sometimes they will pay in several installments as the project goes on.

If you have to pay in installments, contact Findlay and let us know: We can provide information on the completion of the roof replacement that will allow the insurance company to pay at various stages in the project.

Image Source: Flickr