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What to Do if Santa and His Reindeer Damage Your Roof

What to Do if Santa and His Reindeer Damage Your Roof

December 21st, 2022

Roof damage can come from various sources, usually from storms carrying high winds and hail. (And, yes, there can be the occasional deer or sleigh trail unexpectedly leaving us scratching our heads.) Homeowner’s insurance is designed to help with repairs, should Santa and his elves be unable to repair it with items in his fix-it shop. There is a process to your policy, and through this article, we will assist you with understanding what your policy covers for damages left to your roof, what it does not cover, and how you can begin your claims process. 

Call Your Insurance Company as Soon as You See the Damage 

After a storm blows through your area, or you walk through your lawn and see that damaged shingle, you need to be on the phone with your insurance agent. Do not hesitate or wait to see if it gets worse. A visitation fee would cost less and have the issue be nothing more than a loose shingle, than waiting and having a much larger problem develop. 

 

  • Can I make a minor repair on my own to save money? Here is the kicker. According to the insurance company, no. If you were to do the repair on your own, and then a more significant problem develops, the insurance company may elect to deny your claim. They could deduce the new issue was due to your unskilled repair work. 

Other reasons your claim may be denied are due to neglect and improper installation by the installer, regardless of their professional standing. Your course of action then would be to take it up with the company that performed the installation. 

  • How do I know if I have damage to my roof? It is always best to check your roof regularly, regardless of whether you have sleigh marks or not. You do not need to get a ladder and climb up there and risk needing another type of insurance. A decent set of binoculars is well enough to visually inspect your roof. If there is any damage, report it.

The Process for Getting Your Roof Repaired

The first step to repairing damage to your roof is calling your insurance company. They will first inform you if you have coverage, then give you the green light to inspect the roof. 

Next, shop around for the right roofing contractor to perform the job. Sometimes your insurance company will have a list of recommended contracted professionals; if not, begin your search.

 

  • The inspection does not end after looking at just one company. Use up to three estimates. To approve a claim, your insurance company may require multiple estimates for cost purposes. Always make sure the companies are licensed and creditworthy and check past client comments to ensure they are reputable.

Once you have found your company, they will come out and do a full inspection of your roof. Make sure they do a thorough job and catch everything. There may be an underlying issue to that leak or a missing shingle you may be unaware of. If they repair one issue only to have another one surface a couple of months later, it could cause more damage. 

Will My Roof Have Full Coverage?

Coverage will depend on how often Santa has visited your home address in the past. The more he has made the trip down your chimney, the lower your coverage could be. It is called depreciation. The roof’s age can determine coverage. Other factors that will determine coverage can be what the roof covering material consists of:

  • Slate or tile
  • Wood
  • Concrete
  • Asphalt

Insurance coverage depreciates with most insurance companies the longer you live in your home. After ten years, an insurance company may not provide your home with full coverage. It is wise to examine the language of your policy to see if there is a depreciation clause and see what you need to meet the requirements, or perhaps find a company or policy that gives you the coverage you need. 

Can I Sue Santa for Damaging My Roof?

Well, you can try, but I would not expect to see great gifts under the tree this year if you do. If you have external damage that another party causes to your roof that is not storm-related, your insurance policy covers the damage as part of its vandalism clause. Not that the man in the red suit with a belly that jiggles when he laughs like a bowl full of jelly meant any harm. If your insurance adjuster examined the damage and he was to deny your claim, you may have a case against dear ole’ Saint Nick. Just be sure your camera caught him in the act. 

Quick Tips for Saving Money on Roof Repairs and Homeowner’s Insurance  

When considering roofing costs both now and in the future, think proactively. It is always best to take in the bigger picture instead of what will keep water dripping on your head now. 

 

Quick Tip 1: Consider future roofing costs. A cheaper roof does not always mean cheaper down the line, especially regarding future repairs. This is especially true when you are having a new home built. Think about what you are signing up for when you have a roof installed. A higher cost now could save you down the line in costly repairs. 

Quick Tip 2: Consider a roof upgrade to lower insurance costs. We talked about depreciation, but what about upgrades? Putting on a new roof can increase the street appeal and your home’s value. It also impacts the insurance cost. If you upgrade the status of your roof, meaning you installed a slate when it was wood, then you have lowered the risk of a fire hazard. Hence, your insurance cost will most likely decrease. However, if you had done the reverse, you may experience a premium increase.

   

Santa is one busy fella, traveling from rooftop to rooftop. We are glad his reindeer do not leave evidence of their visitation. If they did, there would be far more homeowner roof claims every holiday season, and Santa would spend more money paying out claims than restocking his warehouse for next year’s gift-giving expedition. 

How You Can Get Started

Keeping your home from experiencing internal damage starts by repairing roof damage the moment it is noticed. Whether by Santa and his reindeer or from a storm with wind or hail, time is of the essence. Duliban Insurance can assist you with finding the right homeowner’s insurance policy that gives you the coverage your home needs and leaves you with money to stock the tree with presents for the family.

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