Exploring New Home Construction

What To Do If Your Roof Has Suffered Hail Damage

Hail storms can be fun to watch. You may even enjoy catching and playing with the balls of ice falling from the sky... until you step back and realize the damage that the hail is doing to your home. The most common site for hail damage is the roof because, after all, it does rest on the top of your home. After a hail storm, follow these steps to check for hail damage and to get it repaired:

Step 1: Assess The Damage

It's important that you're able to see the whole roof for this inspection, so climb up on a ladder when necessary. If you are not comfortable on a ladder, find a friend or family member who is. Or, you can call a roof repair contractor in your area and have them assess your roof for damage. Some may even offer this service free of charge if you agree to hire them to make the repairs (which won't cost you anything out of pocket since your homeowner's insurance should cover hail damage).

If you are assessing the damage yourself, here is what to look for:

  • Round, black spots on any of the shingles
  • Splits and slits in some shingles
  • Shingles that are missing corners
  • Shingles that appear to be loose

Do not assume that if just one or two shingles are damaged, there's no need for repairs. Just one weak shingle can let water in, leading to thousands in damage. If you notice any damage whatsoever, move on to step 2.

Step 2: File An Insurance Claim

It's important to file a claim as soon as possible so that the insurance company is assured the damage resulted from this recent storm. Before you call to make your claim, gather the following:

  • Pictures or videos of the roof damage
  • Pictures of the hail -- if you have them
  • An estimate of the size of the hail balls
  • Your insurance policy number
  • The time and date of the storm

The company may have you mail or email them some of the information above before they formally issue a claim number. Then, they will send an adjuster out to look at the roof before determining how much cash they will give you for the damages.

Step 3: Hire a Roofer

Once you have the cash in hand to cover the damages, you can hire a roofing contractor of your choice to make the repairs. If you had someone out to inspect for the hail damage, it is conventional to give them the job. Make sure the company you choose has a good reputation and is licensed in your jurisdiction. In most cases, they should be able to repair the damage within a couple of days.