If you are wondering, “does insurance cover roof replacement,” it depends on the circumstance. If your roof or structure is damaged by an insured peril, a home insurance policy will cover it. Some policies may exclude or name specific perils. It is possible to have your roof replaced due to unforeseeable events or severe weather, other than flooding. Standard homeowners insurance will typically not cover roof replacement if the roof is more than 10 years old or needs maintenance.
What does roof insurance do?
When it comes to protecting your home and contents, the roof is the first line of defense. Because they can withstand all the elements including rain, sun, wind and freezing temperatures, roofs are designed to do so. A roof, no matter how sturdy it is, will eventually become less resilient to the elements, increasing its vulnerability to damage.
It can be expensive to repair or replace a roof. If the damage is caused by a covered peril, insurance companies will cover it. Insurance companies might not cover an older roof due to the possibility of a serious damage claim. They may also require inspections to verify that it can withstand the elements.
If the roof is old or needs maintenance, an insurance company may decline to cover it. The carrier might instead offer actual cash value insurance which pays only a portion of the claim depending on the roof’s condition and age. The Texas Department of Insurance explains how actual cash value for a roof that will cost $10,000 to replace works:
Types of roof damage
An insurance company will distinguish between roof damage due to a covered loss and damage due to wear and tear. If your roof is damaged by rain, hail, snowstorms, falling tree branches, wind, fire, or other covered losses, your insurance company will typically pay to repair or replace the roof.
If there is a leak that is not associated with a peril due to the failure of the structure, lack of maintenance, or the roof’s older age, an insurance company will likely not cover the cost to repair the damage or replace the roof. It is crucial to maintain your roof. A failing roof is costly and will most likely not be covered by your home insurance.
Keep your roof safe
A roof that is in good condition will withstand severe weather and damage better than an older roof. The following maintenance tips will help you keep your roof in top condition and protect your contents for many years.
- A periodic inspection is a good idea. An inspector who inspects your roof every few year could catch problems early. It is important to find a reliable inspector that you can trust. Some roofing companies might claim that there are problems in order to convince you to replace your roof.
- Prune nearby trees. Trees too close to rooftops can cause damage in several ways. A tree branch that falls on the roof can cause damage if it is hit by strong winds or an ice storm. Tree branches can rub against the roof, damaging the surface and causing shingles to be lost. Trees too close to roofs should be kept trimmed and cleared.
- Keep your gutters clean. Gutters are designed to move water away from rooftops. Water can get trapped in gutters if it is clogged with leaves and other debris. This could cause water to overflow onto the roof, weakening the structure, or interior leaks.
What do I do if my roof isn’t working?
A new roof is an expensive investment. The average cost of replacing a roof is as much as $11,420. You should start by looking for a reputable and quality roofing company. While it’s great to get recommendations from family and friends, it’s important to verify that the company is licensed, insured, bonded, and bonded.
The type of material you choose will also affect how long your roof will last. Asphalt shingle roofs last an average of 20 years. Modernize.com claims there are 18 types of roofing shingles available. You may be able to choose depending on where you live.
Roof repair vs. roofing replacement
These are some options to consider when deciding whether to replace or repair your roof.
- If the damage is small and concentrated in one area, repair it.
- If the cost of repair is close to the cost of replacing the roof, replace it.
- If the roof is relatively new, repair it within 10 years.
- If your roof is old and you are selling your house in the near future, replace it.
- If the roof is not damaged by the new non-matching shingles, it can be repaired.
The bottom line
Roof repair or replacement can be one of your most costly tasks as a homeowner. Roof-related damage is covered by your home insurance, but not for other perils like fire, severe weather or falling objects. Most often, your homeowners insurance doesn’t cover leaks or damages caused by a roof that is older or less well maintained. A roof that is in good condition will be able to withstand any weather conditions and other unexpected events. To avoid more serious problems down the line, it is essential to keep your roof in good condition.