Rental Protections: What Renter's Insurance Is All About

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Will Insurance Cover a Roof Leak?

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A leak in your roof can be expensive to repair. By the time the roof is leaking, there is damage done to the outer layer of the roof, as well as inner layers of the roof such as the sheathing and decking. In addition to this all needing to be repaired or replaced, you also have to repair or replace anything that was damaged when water fell through your home, including insulation in your wall, and drywall on the walls or ceilings. Due to the cost, you may find yourself wondering if home insurance will cover roof leaks. Here is some information that will help tell you whether your roof leak insurance claim will likely be accepted or denied. 

When Insurance Will Deny a Roof Leak

It is your responsibility to properly maintain and repair your roof. If your roof is leaking due to its poor condition, because it has not been maintained, or because it is well past its usable lifespan, the insurance company will deny your claim. Keep up with maintenance and repairs, and replace your roof as needed to avoid this scenario. 

When Insurance Will Cover a Roof Leak

Your home insurance company will likely approve your roof leak insurance claim if the leak is caused by unexpected damage. A tree limb may have fallen on your home on a windy day and then water poured in the roof through a crack before it could be repaired. Or perhaps strong winds blew shingles off your roof and then the rain seeped through as well. Hail storms can also cause damage that would lead to leaks that would be covered. 

When It is Questionable If the Leak Will Be Covered 

It becomes questionable if insurance will approve a roof leak insurance claim if you wait too long to file a claim or fix an issue that would normally be covered. For example, if a hail storm rolls in and damages your roof, the cracks and damage would normally be covered by your insurance company, as well as any leaks that immediately arise.

However, if you fail to file a claim for six months, and water has been seeping through these cracks and pits for six months, you have some responsibility for the amount of damage that has since occurred. In these situations, insurance companies have to carefully assess whether you are more at fault for the damage or the weather elements. If they feel you were, the claim may be denied. As such, always have your roof inspected after a major weather event so you are not in this scenario. 

If you have a leaky roof, it never hurts to file a claim with your homeowners' insurance company and see if they will accept it. However, if you have not maintained or cared for your roof, your claim will likely be denied. As such, it is important to have your roof inspected annually and have repairs made as needed. Not only does this keep your roof in great shape, but it helps ensure a claim for any future roof leaks caused by weather-related factors will be accepted. Contact a company that offers home insurance to learn more about what their policies do and don't cover.