- Record the date. If you just recently had a hail or wind storm in your area write down the date. If you are going to file an insurance claim you will need the date to file a claim. If you can it is also a good idea to take pictures to show your insurance company.
- Get an opinion from an experienced contractor. If you think that you may have hail or wind damage to your home contact a qualified contractor to come out to your home and give you an estimate.
- Meeting with the contractor. When the contractor comes out to your home find out some information on them and their company. Ask them what type of services they provide and how long they have been in business. It will take the contractor approximately 10-20 minutes depending on what type of damage you have to your home. If you have extensive damage to your home it will take them longer. When the contractor is finished inspecting the damage ask them if they would recommend that you file a claim with your insurance company. Make sure to get a business card and ask them if they would be willing to be there when your insurance company comes out to access the damage.
- File Your Claim. If the contractor recommends that you file a claim, call your insurance company and tell them that you want to file a claim for hail and/or wind damage. Let your insurance company know that you had a contractor come out to your home for a hail and wind damage inspection and that they made recommendations that certain things needed to be replaced due to hail and wind damage. (for example: roof, siding, windows, and gutters) keep in mind that the age of your roof, siding, windows, gutters, or other damaged areas does not matter if they are damaged. The insurance company wants to prevent any further claims due to the hail and wind damage you may have.
- Meet with your Insurance Adjuster. When the insurance adjuster comes to your home it will take them about a half hour to assess the damage and take pictures of any damage. The adjuster will then explain the steps that will take place after that. Your insurance company might give you a quote right away, but some claims can take several weeks. Generally what happens is the insurance adjuster and the contractor compare notes with each other to make sure their measurements are the same or if they disagree on any damage that has been assessed by both of them. At this point the contractor will debate the claim with the adjuster until they agree with each other. If your contractor is not there at the time of the inspection you can inform your contractor what they said and most insurance companies will send their adjuster back to discuss the claim with your contractor.
- The Inspection has been completed by Adjustor. Hopefully the adjustor will let you know whether or not they feel you have a claim or not. Then you can make sure you get written quotes from contractors and compare them. As you are deciding on which contractor you are going to use take into consideration a company’s experience, references, and their reputation not just the price they are offering you.
- Scheduling the Work. If you’re insurance company approves your claim you will most likely get enough to cover your damage, less your deductible. If they don’t give you enough ask your contractor to help you dispute the amount based on the estimate given to have the work done. Some insurance companies will hold back some money for depreciation however; at the end of the job all you have to do is have your contractor send them a letter of completion stating the total amount and your insurance company will send you the difference.
About Storm Chasers
What is a storm chaser? Storm chasers are companies that follow severe
weather from area to area, completing home repairs (generally roofs and siding)
that are damaged by hail and wind. They collect homeowners’ insurance claim
checks in payment for their services, complete the work (often shoddily) before
moving on to the next storm ravaged area. Here in Dallas, we are prone to
hailstorms, and storm chasers generally quickly follow any such event. They
generally go door-to-door in storm damaged areas, and may advertise themselves
as insurance recovery experts or specialists in insurance restoration. (The term
“Storm Chaser” can also be used to describe a person who follows storms in
order to research, photograph, or simply experience a weather phenomenon. This
type of storm chaser is entirely different and is not of any concern to a
Why are storm chasers bad? The first step of a storm chaser is to ask
the homeowner to sign a contract allowing their company to negotiate with
homeowner’s insurance company. By signing these documents, homeowners may
be waiving their right to any decision making regarding their repairs or
replacement. They also lose control over the insurance settlement, and the
entire check of the payment may legally need to be signed over to the storm
chaser- regardless of the quality or quantity of work completed. The homeowner
may lose some control over materials used, leaving the storm chaser free to cut
corners in order to increase their profit. Most importantly, warranty repairs
can be very difficult to obtain as most storm chasers leave the area as soon as
the storm “plays out.” These companies are generally gone long before warranty
issues arise. The company is certainly not going to return from Florida
or Ohio to repair a problem with their work. To make matters even more
difficult, some storm chasers lease local company names so the appear to be
local. Once they complete their work in the area, they leave. The local company
is then responsible for the warranty work. Of course, the volume of warranty
work is often so great the local company ends up out of business, leaving the
homeowner with problems.
Storm chasers are also very damaging to the local
economy. They deprive local contractors of business and decrease the number of
resources you have when your roof suddenly springs a leak. By employing a
local contractor to complete your repairs, you are helping to employee
How to spot a storm chaser
Storm chasers usually:
Advantages of Ridge Vent
Roof ridge vents help to effectively prolong
and protect a homeowner's roof from common culprits within the home, including
moisture and heat. Found on most new homes, roof ridge vents offer a
very simple and effective technology that many homeowners are relatively
uninformed about. Especially here in Texas, with the HOT summers, finding the
proper ventilation is very important!
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Homes without roof ridge vents have the issue of an
escape route for outside air flowing into the attic. The problem with
traditional roofing is that once the outside air goes into the attic, it has no
way to escape. Roof ridge-vent allows the outside air that enters to
escape out the top of the roof, preventing damage--such as premature aging and
cracking--to the attic and roof.
Moisture can be released from many activities that are
performed within homes, including running a washer, using a dishwasher or taking
a shower. Moisture is one of the leading causes of damage to rafters, shingles,
walls and insulation within homes. Roof ridge vents help to release
moisture from homes, which is especially useful during the winter when moisture
has a greater impact.
With the help of wind, a ventilation system is
created in the attic with a roof ridge vent. As wind passes over the roof ridge
vent, it draws air out of the attic. Fresh air is then drawn into the underside
of the vent, creating a circulation system of fresh air.
Most homeowners prefer the look of roof ridge
vents--which are sleek and blend in well with the other shingles--to other
forms of ventilation systems, which often consist of large fans, turbines and
Another benefit of roof ridge ventilation
systems is that they are effective without being used in combination with other
systems. Other types of ventilation systems, such as fans and powered
ventilators, can even have an adverse effect when used with roof ridge vents
because of airflow issues.
President and Owner of Above All Roofing.