As an industry expert, I’ve heard countless questions regarding homeowners’ insurance and replacing old roofs. One of the most frequent questions I get is: will insurance cover a 20-year-old roof?
Well, there’s no direct answer to this question, and that’s why I’m here to provide a little bit of information on the subject. With this blog post, I hope to answer some questions about homeowners insurance and provide insights into the claims process.
Will Your Homeowners Insurance Cover Your Roof After 20 Years?
This is a critical question of concern for many homeowners, and understandably so. However, the age of your roof is just one factor that will affect your coverage. The most important factor to consider is the cause of the damage. Insurance providers aren’t in the business of covering the cost to replace or repair older roofs simply because they’ve been around for a while. They are more concerned with what led to them becoming damaged in the first place.
Standard Insurance Coverage For Roofs After 20 Years
Your homeowner’s insurance policy serves to safeguard your home against unexpected damage stemming from specific events, such as severe weather, fires, or vandalism. The age of your roof doesn’t take center stage in these scenarios. If your roof suffers damage due to any of these covered events, your insurance company is typically willing to step in and assist with the necessary repairs or even a replacement, regardless of your roof’s age.
However, there’s a catch.
What’s Excluded In Most Insurance Policies
Insurance is not designed to cover the gradual wear and tear that is sure to occur over the years. If your 20-year-old roof is displaying symptoms of normal aging, like leaks or structural degradation, your claim may be met with resistance. Routine maintenance and the responsibility for preserving your roof’s condition lie with you as the homeowner. Insurance companies do not take on the burden of these expected signs of aging.
Roof Inspections Play A Big Role In The Final Decision
To assess and determine the condition of your roof, insurance adjusters, along with a roofing expert, often perform comprehensive inspections. During these assessments, they analyze the extent of the damage and the primary cause. If the damage is predominantly attributed to a covered event, your insurance is likely to step in, even for an aging roof. However, if wear and tear is identified as the primary culprit, your claim is bound to encounter challenges.
Making The Most of Your Coverage
While insurance isn’t inherently biased against older roofs, there are proactive steps you can take to enhance your chances of a successful claim.
Regular Roof Maintenance
Ensuring proper roof maintenance is one of the most pivotal measures. By taking steps like regular roof and gutter cleaning, winterization, and promptly addressing any issues, you can extend its lifespan and minimize the risk of claims being denied due to negligence.
Documenting The Details
In the unfortunate scenario that you need to file a claim, detailed documentation of the damage is crucial. Hire a reliable roofing professional for inspection and documentation. They may have high-tech drones and thermal cameras to capture everything, even what’s not visible to the naked eye. Also, ensure that you maintain a detailed record of the date and circumstances surrounding the damage. This serves as evidence to support your claim.
Know Your Policy Inside and Out
It’s wise to review your insurance policy periodically. Familiarize yourself with what it covers and what it excludes. If you have concerns about your aging roof’s insurability, consider discussing your policy options with your insurance company to make sure you have adequate coverage.
Are There Any Insurance Plans For 20-Year-Old Roofs?
A common misconception among homeowners is that insurance coverage for a 20-year-old roof is impossible to obtain. However, it’s essential to clarify that insurance companies are typically willing to provide coverage for older roofs, provided certain conditions are met.
The Eligibility Criteria
- Your roof is well-maintained and not damaged
- You have high-quality roofing material, like slate or tile
- A prior roof inspection and condition report
- Records of previous work done on the roof
It’s worth noting that while you can obtain insurance for a 20-year-old roof, the coverage may come with certain limitations. For example:
Actual Cash Value
Insurance providers may offer coverage based on the actual cash value of your roof, which takes into account depreciation. This means that in the event of a claim, you’ll receive an amount equivalent to the current market value of your roof, factoring in its age.
Due to the increased risk linked to older roofs, insurance premiums may be higher for older roofs compared to newer ones. It’s essential to consider the cost-benefit ratio when determining whether to insure an aging roof.
Remember, the age of your roof alone is not a barrier to obtaining coverage. Choosing the right insurance company and being assertive in maintaining your aging roof can help you navigate the process and safeguard your property effectively. The best way to get started is by asking for the help of a reputable and knowledgeable roofing contractor in your area, who offers insurance claim assistance.
If you are looking for insurance claim assistance for a 20-year-old roof in South Jersey, our roofing experts are here to help.
Get The Best Insurance Coverage For Your Roof With Champion Exteriors
At Champion Exteriors, we’ve been helping homeowners with insurance claims for many years. We have worked with many insurance companies, and our professionals have a deep understanding of the roof insurance claim process, operations, and provisions. As South Jersey’s roofing experts, it’s our duty to help our fellow property owners protect their homes, businesses, and investments. If you require assistance with your roof insurance claim in South Jersey, you can trust our polished, well-equipped, and reliable team. Give us a call at (800) 276-0032 for a free consultation, and learn more about your roof’s condition and coverage possibilities.