Would Your Roof Fail a Homeowners Insurance Inspection?
Whether you purchase a home or have lived in your current home for several years, your insurer may require a homeowners insurance inspection. The insurance company sends an adjuster to your home to inspect the condition and stability of the roof. Passing the assessment is crucial for keeping your policy and maintaining low premiums.
As a homeowner, the insurance company assigns you to take care of your roof by scheduling routine professional roof maintenance. Doing so ensures that your roof protects your family during harsh weather and minimizes damage claims that may cost the insurer thousands of dollars. A homeowners insurance inspection reveals how well you have maintained the roof.
What Does a Homeowners Insurance Inspection Include?
A homeowners insurance inspection includes an assessment of key components and systems throughout the property. The adjuster will review the electrical system, plumbing, air conditioning, framework, appliances, foundations, and other areas. However, they are most concerned with the roof’s condition, as it provides the most protection and stability of any component in the house.
Inspectors may look at different parts of the roof, such as:
- Outer roofing material (shingles, metal, tiles, etc.)
- Underlayment and decking
- Skylights or chimneys
- Damaged or worn-out components
- Protrusions (vent pipes, satellite dish, etc.)
- Mold or algae growth
- Termite damage
The inspector may also look at your home warranty and prescribed maintenance schedule to ensure that the roof aligns with current building codes and manufacturer specifications.
Why Do Homeowners Insurance Companies Require Inspections?
Before providing coverage for a house, insurance carriers need to understand the level of risk that they are taking to set your premiums and to consider any exclusions from the policy. The best way to assess risk is to schedule an inspection periodically. The initial installation will help them determine what type of policy to offer. Subsequent reviews allow the insurer to adjust the policy based on changes to the roof.
Hurricanes are a recurring threat in Northwest Florida; therefore, you can expect your insurer to schedule professional roof inspections, more frequently. If you are purchasing a home on the coast, it is a prudent idea to organize an inspection to identify any severe roof damage, thus indicating whether the seller should take care of any issues before you purchase the property. An insurance company can be valuable in such situations.
What Happens if My Roof Fails an Inspection?
Since homeowners insurance is required in Florida, most insurance companies will work with you if you fail your homeowners inspection. In some cases, you may need to look for a new policy depending on your situation. Insurance companies typically take one of the following three actions if you fail an inspection:
The Insurer Cancels Your Policy
The worst-case scenario is that the insurance company cancels your policy. This typically happens if the roof is more than 20 years old and is heavily damaged – usually through some form of neglect or vandalism. If the provider cancels your policy, you may have to turn to a high-risk company to obtain coverage for your home.
The Insurer Adds Exclusions to Your Policy
The insurance company may continue to provide coverage but add exclusions to the policy. For instance, some insurance companies may only cover one layer of shingles. Other companies may not cover roof defects until you replace the defective part; furthermore, some companies may exclude the roof from any type of coverage but cover the rest of the house.
The Insurer Requests Repairs or a Replacement
Instead of dropping your policy or adding exclusions to your coverage, the insurance company may mandate a professional roof repair or a full roof replacement. The adjuster may give you the replacement conditions and a deadline before they consider canceling your policy. Once you make the necessary adjustments, the insurer may drop your rates.
Professional Roof Maintenance Can Prevent Policy Cancelation
Regardless of the roof age or type, you can prevent the insurance company from canceling your policy by simply scheduling routine roof maintenance. The roofing materials manufacturer or your roofing contractor may recommend a maintenance schedule – usually once or twice a year, and before the hurricane season.
Roof maintenance can prevent small issues from turning into costly repairs or replacements. A well-maintained roof will also keep your insurance premiums low. When scheduling maintenance, make sure the contractor performs each job according to your warranty, manufacturer specifications and any conditions included in your insurance policy. In addition, make sure you inform your insurance company each time you schedule maintenance.
Schedule a Free Roof Inspection on the Gulf Coast
Quality Roofing Solutions offers premier roofing services for homeowners in Pensacola, Milton, Pace, Gulf Breeze and the surrounding Gulf Coast area. Call 850–378–3757 or fill out the quick form on our contact page to schedule a free roof inspection.