15
May

Brazoria County Hail Storm? What to do next.

Brazoria County Hail Storm Hail Paths

“Hail and wind like I haven’t seen in all the years I’ve lived here,”

said James S., a Lake Jackson resident who also works in Brazoria County.  Later he remarked “Northwood and West Columbia got hit pretty good and the weather service said Angleton got some 4 inch hail”.

This is no surprise if your reside almost anywhere in Brazoria County, Texas.  Last month’s April showers brought high wind, hail, and what some were calling a 500-year rain.

While a Brazoria County hail storm is not unheard of, it has been several years since Brazoria has seen hail larger than a marble.

The picture above shows a hail path we mapped around Angleton and Lake Jackson from just a single day.  The hail path shows just the center of the storm; the actual swath of the storm was much, much larger.   What does this mean?  If a property was anywhere near this path it got hit.

Did you get large or small hail?

Even small hail can cause significant damage in large volumes or high winds.  Ever seen a picture of hay needles or branches stuck into the side of a barn from tornado winds?  Even small hail such as pea or marble- sized can do significant damage when thrown at 60-70 mph.  The latest Brazoria County hail storms had very high winds.

Brazoria County Hail Storm pea sized hail

Small hail which caused damage in Brazoria
County

What to do if you suspect you have roof damage from the Brazoria County hail storms?

Call, Examine, Act

  • Call your insurance company, open a claim, and have your roof examined. REMEMBER: Your rates cannot be increased for making a storm related claim.
  • Examine the results of the insurance company’s estimate of damage before doing anything else.
  • Act by taking advantage of the insurance company’s estimate and their money:
    • If they agree to replace your roof in full then start by getting at least 7 bids from qualified roofers (Better Business Bureau, etc.).
    • If they DO NOT agree to replace in full, but only part of your roof then:
      • Get 3 roofers to examine your roof to get their opinion OR
      • Hire a licensed insurance adjuster (not a Public Adjuster) to verify the actual damage OR
      • Contact RoofBidders and we will advise you AT NO CHARGE based on satellite imagery and on the ground spotters.
    • After getting multiple bids by high quality roofers, put a new roof on your home, and save tons of money.

NOTE: If the insurance company denies your claim and you know you have damage from the latest Brazoria County hail storm (or any other storm) then contact an attorney.

REMEMBER:  Take advantage of infrequent but powerful storms to upgrade your home by having the insurance company buy you a new roof whenever possible.


Confused or want more information? Trying to understand the costs associated with replacing a roof?  Call, email, post to Facebook, or tweet to us.  No Fee, No Obligation, Just help for you.

Don’t want to talk to anyone and just want a quick, satellite photograph measurement to help estimate the cost for your roof?  Order the Quick Report

If you have a specific roof issue and can send us a photo via email, Facebook, or Twitter, we will do our best to advise you on the specific issue.

 

 

30
Apr

5 Myths About Insurance Claim Disputes

Insurance Claim Dispute Denied

Insurance Claim Denial

There are a lot misconceptions regarding insurance claim disputes.

Most roof replacements leverage insurance.  If you have storm damage, use your insurance!  You have paid premiums all these years, now reap your reward.

Remember an insurance company CANNOT raise rates for making a claim related to an Act of God (weather).

But what happens if your claim is denied?

Should you fight it?  Do you need an attorney?  

We get this question a lot!  But interpreting the state insurance code or your insurance contract is a legal area we do not handle. So, we asked Chip Lane from The Lane Law Firm to pen an article about denied insurance claims.  This article was also posted on The Lane Law Firm Blog.


Have a denied insurance claim but don’t know whether or not to hire an attorney?

Chip Lane, Esq – April 2015

Homeowners and roofing contractors often go it alone or hire a Public Adjuster because they believe one or more myths about how attorneys work and get paid. Unfortunately, these myths cost both homeowners and roofers lots of money.

Don’t fall prey to these 5 Myths About Insurance Claim Disputes and Attorneys:


MYTH #1: There will not be enough money to replace the roof after the attorney is paid.

TRUTH #1: There should be more than enough money to replace the roof.  Property owners, contractors, and public adjusters can only recover the amount of the property damages. By law, attorneys are entitled to their fees and costs, 18% interest, plus other penalties; all of which is paid by the insurance company, in addition to the amount of the property damages, when a denial or partial claim is improper.

MYTH #2: Attorneys demand money upfront.

TRUTH #2: A reputable insurance claim dispute attorney will not ask for money upfront; because they work on contingency and get paid only if they win.

MYTH #3: The insurance policy will be cancelled or the property owner’s rates will be raised if an attorney is hired or files suit.

TRUTH #3: State law forbids insurance companies from raising rates or terminating coverage because of a weather-related claim or if a property owner hires an attorney who sues the insurance company.

MYTH #4: Public adjusters (PA) are better suited to handle insurance disputes than attorneys.

TRUTH #4: Only an attorney can dispute denied claims or handle legal issues such as bad faith, slow payment, mental anguish, loss of income due to time off, or reimbursements. 

MYTH #5: Attorneys get paid on money they did not earn or the homeowner got on their own.

TRUTH #5: Attorneys only gets paid on the “net new” money; in other words only the additional money over and above what the homeowner already has. 


Remember, insurance policies and Texas insurance law provides that the insurance company should pay for the homeowner’s attorney’s fees and costs for a wrongful denial of a claim.

The bottom line is that an experienced insurance claim dispute attorney should get money over and above what the homeowner, roofer, or public adjuster is able to get and better yet, is only paid on net new money.  It is a no lose scenario for property owners and roofing contractors.


Thanks again to Chip Lane.  We hope you never have to deal with an insurance claim dispute but if you do and especially if it denial then take action.

Confused or want more information? Trying to understand the costs associated with replacing a roof?  Call, email, post to Facebook, or tweet to us.  No Fee, No Obligation, Just help for you.

Don’t want to talk to anyone and just want a quick, satellite photograph measurement to help estimate the cost for your roof?  Order the Quick Report

If you have a specific roof issue and can send us a photo via email, Facebook, or Twitter, we will do our best to advise you on the specific issue.

24
Feb

Will filing an insurance claim increase premiums?

insurance claim

Homeowner’s Insurance Policy

Will An Insurance Claim Increase Premiums?

Most people associate filing an insurance claim with rising policy rates.  The fact is, this is usually not true.  Claims made due to “Acts of God” such as wind, hail, or other storm damage will NOT cause an increase in your premiums.  Furthermore, insurance companies CANNOT drop your coverage for making such a claim.

Property insurance is different from auto insurance.  Auto insurance has dozens, sometimes hundreds of tiers for premium rates.  Auto insurance rates consider claim history, citation record, driver’s license points, and various other factors which contribute to the policy owner’s tier and premium.  But when in comes to property insurance premium rates, claims they do not necessarily dictate the rates for homeowner’s insurance.

Homeowner’s insurance focuses more on the region in which the property is located.

As previously mentioned, an insurance company cannot raise an individual’s rates when a claim is filed due to weather-related damage.  The number of catastrophes an area has suffered in the past few years, the potential risk in the area, the type of residential home, the amount of coverage bought, and other factors dictate premium cost.

Filing one claim will not spike an individual premium rate.

Premiums may go up in the subsequent years, but it is not a direct result of a legitimate claim. The premiums are usually raised in bulk for a given region, not individually, and insurance companies can only submit rate increases once per year.  Thus, when asking yourself, “will filing an insurance claim increase premiums?” tell yourself, “No, it will not.”

In fact, if you have a loss with significant damage, the right thing to do is file the claim.

Why file an insurance claim instead of paying out-of-pocket?

First, you have been paying premiums every year for exactly this reason.  Why not use your insurance for what it’s designed?   Second, most policies require that you MUST notify the insurance company if you have significant damage or coverage could later be rejected for “hiding” this information.  Could you still to choose to pay for your roof out-of-pocket and never use insurance money?  Sure, but if they offer money we suggest taking it.  Think about it for moment…they are returning some of your money you previously gave them.

Finally, rates tend to go up so take advantage of your insurance coverage when you get the opportunity.


Confused or want more information? Trying to understand the costs associated with replacing a roof?  Call, email, post to Facebook, or tweet to us.  No Fee, No Obligation, Just help for you.

Don’t want to talk to anyone and just want a quick, satellite photograph measurement to help estimate the cost for your roof?  Order the Quick Report

If you have a specific roof issue and can send us a photo via email, Facebook, or Twitter, we will do our best to advise you on the specific issue.

25
Nov

Roof Maintenance Tips for Winter

roof maintenance needed for snow on roof

Snow laden roof

Winter Time – Tip for Preventive Roof Maintenance

Fall has quickly passed and we’re moving into Winter, although in the South it stills feels like Fall.  Yesterday, I had a Christmas light installer put lights on my home.  He pointed out that several sections of the roof had “slippery” shingles – meaning the granules easily came off.   I assured him that I knew and asked him to use a ladder instead of running around on my roof.

Preventive roof maintenance is an absolute necessity.  The heat of the summer is behind us, but it’s possible that you have buckled shingles, dried out caulking, or leaking roof areas which are unidentified.  Strong winds over the past several months may have lifted shingles or blown debris such as tree limbs onto your roof.  Take a good look at your drains which easily become clogged which then results in improper drainage which can set up a water penetration situation in the future.

Cold weather issues

Winter brings cold weather, higher winds, and blowing dead or loose debris, which will damage your roof.   As your roof continues to be exposed to nature’s elements, your roof integrity will degrade resulting in damage that can go undetected until it becomes a serious problem.  It is good to remember that your roof is the skin protecting your home or commercial building.  If you have a lot of snow then you should consider snow guards such as those designed by Rock Mountain Snow Guards like this:

Roof maintenance instrument snow guard

Snow Guard from Rocky Mountain

Roof maintenance is as important as auto maintenance

Preventive roof maintenance should be viewed as important as preventive maintenance on a car and truck.  Skipping oil changes or mileage service points will slowly degrade your vehicle – roof maintenance is no different.  I encourage you to have your roof inspected by a professional every three years, or more frequently if you do no engage in preventive maintenance or have moved into a new home and have no idea if the seller did any type of roof maintenance.

Remember though to not jump to conclusions about your roof needing to be replaced simply because a single roofer says you need one.  A quality roofing company will present ideas on how to patch or otherwise mediate your damage.  When you are ready to replace your roof get multiple bids from quality roofing contractors.

Maintenance conclusions

If you are able to get up on your roof, even if only partially via a ladder, do it.  Do your own inspection looking for problems that need to be addressed.  You will save a lot of money by proactively maintaining your roof and heading off issues before they become big problems.

Confused or want more information? Trying to understand the costs associated with replacing a roof?  Call, email, post to Facebook, or tweet to us. No Fee, No Obligation, Just help for you.

Don’t want to talk to anyone and just want a quick, satellite photograph measurement to help estimate the cost for your roof?  Order the Quick Report

If you have a specific roof issue and can send us a photo via email, Facebook, or Twitter, we will do our best to advise you on the specific issue.

31
Oct

Will a new roof save energy and lower my utility bill?

Will a new roof save energy

High Energy Costs?

High energy bills?  Asking yourself will a new roof save energy?

The short answer is… Yes, a new roof almost always saves energy.   Older attics and roof are likely to be outdated in a variety of ways.

Why will a new roof save energy?

Excessive energy costs come from many different places in a home.  Previously, we mentioned how the roof is similar to a body’s skin.  One the skin breaks, the body is susceptible to infection. Any exterior component of a home such as windows, doors, or a roof all are potential energy loss points.

Consider why you are asking yourself the question of will a new roof save energy.  Why ask this question?  Because just putting a new roof on your home may save energy; but it might not save enough energy to make up for the cost of the roof – unless you look at a a long timeline such as 5-10 years.

What are some of the ways a roof will save energy?

First, determine where you can save money by determine where you are losing energy.  Is it the attic itself?  Is it a break down in the roof?  Is there adequate insulation?  Is there adequate ventilation? An issue as simple such as insufficient attic ventilation will cause heating/cooling systems to run excessively.  If the cold air or hot air  pumping into a home from these types of systems escaping as fast as it is coming in?

In warm weather, inadequate ventilation will trap hot air in the attic, causing air conditioning systems to work harder, or leaving your home’s interior hotter and less comfortable.  Additionally, in both hot and cold weather, insufficient attic ventilation may cause moisture in the attic to become trapped and condense on the rafters. This condensed moisture can drip down onto the insulation and reduce its effectiveness.

Will a new roof save energy if the insulation situation is poor?  Not much it won’t.  Without a doubt better insulation and ventilation will reduce energy usage.  So, first consider your current attic insulation and ventilation.  You can get a good idea about what insulation rating is right for your area by checking out the Energy Star government website.

Confused or want more information? Trying to understand the costs associated with replacing a roof?  Call, email, post to Facebook, or tweet to us.  No Fee, No Obligation, Just help for you.

Don’t want to talk to anyone and just want a quick, satellite photograph measurement to help estimate the cost for your roof?  Order the Quick Report

If you have a specific roof issue and can send us a photo via email, Facebook, or Twitter, we will do our best to advise you on the specific issue.

24
Oct

How do I know when to replace my roof? Danger signs for a roof. – part two

Roof problems that help answer the question, “How do I know when to replace my roof?” part two

Last week we pointed out that the guys over at GAF, who manufacture roofing materials, posted a really good set of photos to help you determine if you have red flags that need to be carefully examined.   They call them Key Danger Signals of a Failing Roof?

Let’s look at the other danger signs that likely point to a roof replacement need.  But remember that not every type of roof damage means you have to replace your roof.  You might be able to patch it and then prepare and plan to have it replaced in the near future.

But be on the lookout for the issues below to help answer the question, “How do I know when to replace my roof?”

Stains on Interior Ceilings and Walls or Mold and Mildew Growth

Possible cause: Leaking water supply or drain line OR inadequate, faulty shingle underlayment which allows leakage.  Mold could also be caused by inadequate ventilation which traps moisture.

 

Stains leading to roof replacement

Stains indicating water penetration

Exterior Decay, Sheathing, and/or Siding

Possible cause: Poor attic ventilation.  If the exterior of your home looks like this picture you have a real problem.  Does this answer the question, “when to replace my roof?”  Not yet.  But you need to figure out what is causing this problem. You might have a leak which is slowly eating away at your sheathing or siding.

 

exterior damage indicating roof replacement need

Siding damage

Missing, Cracked, or Curled Shingles

Possible cause: Shingles have reached the end of their useful life OR a major storm tore up the roof.  Sometimes your shingles have just reached their end of life and you need to replace the roof.  If you have 20 year shingles, have had your roof on for 25 years, and it looks like this photo you can answer the question, “How do I know when to replace my roof?” in by nodding your head repeating after me, “Yes.  I need a roof replacement.”

 


singles destroyed indicating roof replacement  need

Major damage to shingles

 

Dark, “dirty-looking” areas

Possible cause: Loss of granules due to age of shingles.  This one is tough.  Your singles might have simple been worn down over time or you might have mold growing on your roof.  It is important to take a closer look.  Do not jump to roof replacement mode just because you have a few worn shingles.  In this photo, the granules have definitely been worn away.  This is a warning sign that a roof replacement is in your future.  But does this answer the question “when to replace my roof?”  Not exactly but it is a warning sign.  At some point these shingles will fail but you still might have a few years if the rest of the roof is in fair shape.

shingles  missing granules indicating time to replace roof

Shingles with missing granules

Confused or want more information? Trying to understand the costs associated with replacing a roof?  Call, email, post to Facebook, or tweet to us.  No Fee, No Obligation, Just help for you.

Don’t want to talk to anyone and just want a quick, satellite photograph measurement to help estimate the cost for your roof?  Order the Quick Report

If you have a specific roof issue and can send us a photo via email, Facebook, or Twitter, we will do our best to advise you on the specific issue.

8
Oct

Roof Warranty. What are the Costs?

No one beats my roof warranty.

Roof warranty! Mine costs less!

Roof warranty covered your issue?  Really?

Roofing materials have one warranty lifespan and the roofing contractor has a second and separate warranty.

Along with overall shingle lifespan, homeowners should understand that the roofer’s warranty, usually called workmanship, and the shingle warranty (or what most call the roof warranty) are two separate affairs, which may or may not overlap.  Fixing something after the warranty has expired will cost you money!  Understand the limits.

In regard to the roofing shingles themselves, understanding what is actually being warranted, who covers it, and what things can void a shingle warranty is all important.  Discussing roof warranty  details with your roofer so that everyone is on the same page is helpful, and reduces the chance of surprises should there be an issue that puts the warranty into play.

When comparing roofing contractor bids it is important to consider how long you plan to live in the home and the warranties provided.

Going to leave within the next few years?  Maybe you don’t want to buy a 30 years roof warranty shingle.  Maybe a excellent 10 year shingle will work fine.

With all of this food for thought, it’s probably easy to see how there is a lot more involved in deciding on the best roof shingle to use on your next roofing job.  Spending a little time researching the various options will pay off in the long run with a quality, durable roof that will last for years without a problem.

Still confused or want more information?   Call or email us at RoofBidders.com    We love to provide FREE education to property owners.  Don’t want to talk to anyone and just get a quick quote?  Order the Quick Report.

We will talk with you at no cost.  If you have a specific roof issue and can send us a photo via email, we will do our best to advise you on the specific issue.

 

13
Sep

Is a metal roof right for you? – Part 1

Metal Roof

Metal roofs are tougher than asphalt shingles plus their heat reflective properties give homeowners the benefits of less energy use, reduced long term costs, and lower energy bills.

Often thought to be one of the more expensive roofing covers, metal roofing offers some price benefits that other forms of traditional roofing may not.

  1. The price of petroleum is escalating and inconsistent, making the cost of creating asphalt shingles higher and more unpredictable.
  2. In areas where damaging storms or heavy precipitation is common, insurance companies frequently offer deep discounts for having durable, metal roofing that can better stand up to flying debris such as falling limbs or even large hail.
  3. Resale values for metal roofs which last much longer than asphalt shingles (2x-3x longer), can increase the value of the property.

Want to know how much a metal roof will cost for your home?   e ……..

Still confused or want more information?   Call or email us at RoofBidders.com    We love to provide FREE education to property owners. We will talk with you at no cost.  If you have a specific roof issue and can send us a photo via email, we will do our best to advise you on the specific issue. 

4
Sep

Signs you may need a new Roof

Old Roof

No matter how diligently a homeowner pays attention to their house roof, there will come a time when the roof simply cannot be repaired and instead must be replaced. But how does a homeowner know when to make such a seemingly drastic call about their house roof? Not to worry; there are several telltale signs that the time for a brand new roof has come at last.

Curled and cracked shingles – If your house roof is made of asphalt shingles and it’s been more than 15 years since the roof was replaced, the general rule of thumb advises that you lean towards getting it replaced. By this time, the roof may be showing serious signs of wear. A house roof whose majority of shingles are curled and cracking is one that probably needs replacing.

Stains –  If there are stains on the outer walls of the house, on the rafters, or on the decking underneath the roof’s shingles, that is a major red flag. Staining around the areas of a house roof can be an indication of problems such as wood rot, a buildup of excessive moisture, or a combination of both. These problems tend to be more common in areas that face seasonal storms and humidity, so your house roof can therefore be vulnerable to these elements and eventually need to be replaced.

Excessive sagging – Poor workmanship or an inadequately ventilated roof can lead to a sagging roof. If the house roof is noticeably sagging, and especially if it has been that way for some time, the house is likely to need a replacement roof.

Still confused or want more information?   Call or email us at RoofBidders.com    We love to provide FREE education to property owners. We will talk with you at no cost.  If you have a specific roof issue and can send us a photo via email, we will do our best to advise you on the specific issue. 

30
Aug

When Does an Asphalt Shingle Roof Need Replacement?

Roof-Replacement-in-process

Each roof’s condition is unique, and needs to be carefully looked at in order to determine whether replacement shingles are needed, or if an entirely new roof is needed.

Typically, an asphalt shingle roof will last roughly 20 years unless it was installed improperly, or a severe hail or wind storm damaged the shingles. Each roofing system is unique and should be looked at by a professional.

Still confused or want more information?   Call or email us at RoofBidders.com    We love to provide FREE education to property owners. We will talk with you at no cost.  If you have a specific roof issue and can send us a photo via email, we will do our best to advise you on the specific issue.