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Written by Andy Gurczak

January 8, 2024

Steps to Take Immediately After Commercial Roof Damage Repair

Commercial Roof Damage Repair

Roof damage is one of the biggest maintenance issues for commercial property owners. Roof damage from storms, fires, or wear & tear can cost a lot and cause water damage.

1. Ensure Safety First

Always put safety first in emergencies. If your commercial property has suffered roof damage, take the following safety precautions:

  • If the damage is bad and it’s not safe, make sure everyone leaves the building safely.
  • If there’s water damage or a risk of electrical problems, turn off electricity and gas to avoid accidents.
  • Be cautious of structural damage: Inspect the building for signs of structural instability caused by the roof damage. If you suspect any, do not enter the premises.
  • Keep up with the weather: If a storm or natural disaster damaged your roof, stay updated to avoid more risks.

2. Document the Damage

Before contacting your insurance company or adjuster, thoroughly document the commercial roof damage repair. Use your smartphone or camera to take clear photos and videos of the affected areas. Ensure you capture:

  • The extent of the roof damage.
  • Any visible water leaks or signs of water damage inside the building.
  • Debris or materials that have fallen from the roof.
  • Damage to the surrounding property or equipment.
  • Any potential hazards caused by the damage.

3. Contact Your Insurance Company

After ensuring safety and documenting the damage, it’s time to contact your insurance company. Here are the key steps to follow:

  • Notify your insurer promptly: Call your insurance company as soon as possible to report the commercial roof damage repair. Provide them with all necessary details, including the date, time, and cause of the damage.
  • Follow the claims process: Your insurance company will guide you through the claims process. Be prepared to provide the documentation and information they request.
  • Stay organized: Keep a record of all communication with your insurance company, including names, dates, and details of conversations.

4. Mitigate Further Damage

Taking immediate action to prevent further damage is crucial. Your insurance policy likely requires you to mitigate damages to the best of your ability. Here’s what you can do:

  • Temporary repairs: If possible and safe, undertake temporary repairs to prevent further water intrusion or damage. Cover any holes or openings in the roof and remove debris.
  • If there’s water damage inside, get professionals to remove the water and dry the area to stop mold from growing.
  • Secure the property: Protect your commercial property from theft or vandalism by securing doors and windows.
  • Keep all receipts and records of your efforts to fix the damage, as your insurance might cover these costs.

5. Consult a Roofing Contractor

After taking care of safety, find a roofing contractor who knows how to fix commercial roofs. Here’s how to proceed:

  • Get several quotes: Ask different roofing contractors for estimates to make sure you get a fair price for the repairs.
  • Ensure the roofing contractor you choose has a license, insurance, and experience with commercial roofs.
  • Check references: Ask for references from previous clients to gauge the contractor’s reputation and quality of work.

6. Understand Your Insurance Coverage

Before proceeding with any repairs, it’s crucial to understand your insurance coverage. Review your insurance policy carefully to determine the extent of your coverage for commercial roof damage repair. Consider the following points:

  • Check how much your insurance will cover for fixing or replacing your roof.
  • Deductibles: Understand the deductible you’ll need to pay out of pocket before your insurance coverage kicks in.
  • Know your policy’s limits: Understand what your insurance doesn’t cover, like certain types of damage or negligence.
  • Claim process: Familiarize yourself with the steps you need to follow to file a successful insurance claim.

7. File an Insurance Claim

After you record the damage, call your insurance, and get quotes from roofers, file an insurance claim. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  • Provide all necessary documentation: Submit your photos, videos, receipts, and any other relevant documentation to your insurance company.
  • Complete claim forms: Fill out any claim forms required by your insurance company accurately and utterly.
  • Cooperate with the adjuster: Work closely with the insurance adjuster assigned to your claim. Provide access to the property and be available for inspections.
  • Keep records: Maintain a record of all correspondence and interactions with the insurance adjuster and your insurance company.

8. Be Prepared for the Insurance Adjuster’s Visit

When the insurance adjuster comes to assess the damage, be ready to:

  • Provide access: Ensure the adjuster can access all areas of the commercial property to assess the damage thoroughly.
  • Share documentation: Show the adjuster your photos, videos, and any quotes from roofing contractors.
  • Ask questions: Don’t hesitate to ask questions or seek explication about the claims process or their assessment.

9. Follow Up on Your Claim

After filing the claim and meeting with the insurance adjuster, stay proactive in the process. Here’s what you should do:

  • Regularly check in: Follow up with your insurance company to track the progress of your claim.
  • Stay informed: Be aware of any updates or requests for additional information from the insurance adjuster.
  • Maintain records: Keep records of all communication with your insurance company and the roofing contractor.
  • Check the insurance settlement: Make sure the amount your insurance offers covers all the repairs you need.

10. Proceed with Roof Repairs or Replacement

Once your insurance pays, you can start fixing or replacing your roof. Here are the steps to take:

  • Select a contractor: Choose a reputable roofing contractor based on the quotes and research you’ve conducted.
  • Review the scope of work: Ensure the contractor’s proposal aligns with the scope of repairs or replacement required.
  • Sign a contract with the contractor that details the work, timeline, costs, and warranties.

11. Protect Against Future Damage

After fixing your commercial roof, work to prevent more damage. Regular maintenance and the following precautions can help:

  • Scheduled inspections: Conduct regular roof inspections to identify and address minor issues before they become major problems.
  • Trim nearby trees: Keep trees near your property trimmed to prevent branches from falling and causing damage during storms.
  • If the damage was from a fire, put in fire safety measures and equipment to lower the risk of it happening again.
  • Upgrade roofing materials: Consider using durable roofing materials, such as impact-resistant shingles, to better withstand storms.

12. Review Your Insurance Coverage

After dealing with commercial roof damage and insurance claims, it’s a good time to check your insurance coverage. Here are some steps to consider:

  • Check if your insurance covers enough to protect your property, and adjust it if needed.
  • Understand policy changes: Familiarize yourself with any changes in your policy or premiums resulting from the claim.
  • Consult your insurance agent: Discuss your insurance needs with a knowledgeable insurance agent to ensure you have adequate coverage.

Conclusion

Handling commercial roof damage can stress property owners, but these steps can make the process smoother. Remember to prioritize safety, document the damage, and work closely with your insurance company and roofing contractor. By following these steps, you can reduce downtime, safeguard your property, and effectively fix your commercial roof damage.

If you have insurance questions, you can reach out to AllCity Adjusting, a company that deals with property claims. You can contact them at 844.692.3587 for expert guidance and support in navigating your insurance claims journey.

Commercial Roof Damage Repair

Commercial Roof Damage Repair

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