How Do I Insure a House with a Bad Roof?
The roof is a core component of your home since it provides the most protection against the harsh Florida climate. Therefore, keeping your roof in top condition is essential especially during hurricane season. Additionally, ongoing roof maintenance serves another purpose; it keeps your insurance rates low and prevents the insurance company from dropping your policy.
If you recently purchased an older home or your insurer dropped your policy, you do not need to forgo coverage. In fact, Florida homes with bad roofs need home insurance coverage the most. Therefore, you may want to consider finding a high-risk insurer until you can schedule a roof repair.
Is It Possible to Insure a Bad Roof?
The answer is yes, you can get insurance for a bad roof. However, even with high-risk insurance, there are several factors the adjusters consider after you file a claim.
The Age of the Roof
Any roof that is 20+ years old is an automatic red flag for an insurance company. Any insurer that is willing to cover the roof will probably require a professional roof inspection and add special exclusions to the policy.
Catastrophic, or peril-related, damage is typically caused by a natural disaster, fire, vandalism or other type of sudden damage. For instance, if a hurricane damages your roof, the insurance company is more likely to accept your claim. However, you may not receive as much compensation since the insurer has already established that you have a bad roof.
Normal Wear and Tear
Insurance companies that cover a bad roof still expect you to perform routine roof maintenance and repair. Your policy will not pay for roof damage caused by normal wear and tear or lack of maintenance. Nor will it pay for preventive roof repairs.
Common Homeowners’ Insurance Exclusions
Even if you get coverage for a bad roof, you can expect the insurance company to add some exclusions to the policy. While some exclusions are specific to your roof’s condition, other exclusions are standard.
Building Code Updates
The insurance company may not cover any repairs you make to bring your home up to current building codes after a covered loss. Any upgrades that need to be made, beyond standard repairs to meet residential or commercial building codes, are typically not covered.
You may be reimbursed for damage from a peril. However, if the insurance company can establish that the damage could have been avoided with proper roof maintenance, you may not receive compensation for the loss. As such, a standard home insurance policy will not cover damage related to necessary roof maintenance, including wear and tear and pest infestations.
If you intentionally damage your roof, the insurance company is likely to reject any damage claim. Furthermore, there is a good chance the insurer will cancel your policy. You may be ineligible to get roof insurance coverage from that point forward without high premiums or additional exclusions.
How Much Can I Expect to Pay for Homeowners’ Insurance with a Bad Roof?
As a rule, you can expect to pay between 10 and 50% more for homeowners’ insurance with a bad roof. You will likely pay significantly higher homeowners’ insurance premiums if you have a bad roof. How much can you expect to pay? The insurer is likely to consider four main items when assessing your coverage and premiums:
- Age of your roof
- Current condition of your roof
- Type of roof on your house
- Shape of your roof
The insurer will also review any previous work done on the roof. Also keep in mind that you live in Florida. The likelihood of hurricane damage is factored into the premium. The bottom line is that a bad roof will increase your coverage and, in turn, your insurance rates.
Will a New Roof Lower My Insurance Premiums?
A substantial portion of your homeowners’ insurance coverage and rates is based on the structural stability and age of your roof. So, if your roof is getting older or has sustained damage you may want to consider scheduling a professional roof replacement. While there is no guarantee how much your premiums will lower, the average homeowner saves 20% on coverage with a new roof.
A new roof will also reduce your repairs and roof maintenance costs. You may also see a reduction in your energy bill as a new roof may increase your home’s energy efficiency. All the savings add up making a new roof cost-effective. Additionally, your home’s market value will increase. A new roof is a great selling point if you decide to sell your house down the road.
Schedule a Free Roof Inspection
Quality Roofing Solutions offers premier roofing services for homeowners. Call (850) 378-3757 or fill out the quick form on our contact page to schedule a free roof inspection.