Colorado is no stranger to hail. In fact, our state sees some of the worst hail storms in the country, so much so that Denver is often nicknamed the ‘Hail Capital’ of the US.
Our state’s unusual weather patterns mean that hail storms can strike when you least expect them. For that reason, it’s always good to not only have solid roofing and reinforced exteriors but home insurance too.
But does Homeowners Insurance actually cover hail damage? We took that important question to our insurance experts to find out how much coverage you can really make a claim for in the wake of a hail storm.
Homeowners Insurance, Defined
Homeowners Insurance is designed to protect your house, and often the property within your house, from damage or theft. It’s an important type of insurance that can reimburse you in the event of break-ins, accidents and in many cases, natural disasters and damage caused by bad weather.
The list of damages that are covered by Homeowners Insurance can vary from one policy to the next, so it’s incredibly important to check what is covered when you take your policy out.
Is Hail Damage Covered?
If you live in Colorado, then you’ll be pleased to know that virtually all Homeowners Insurance policies cover you for hail damage. In the majority of cases, hail damage will be included in the policy.
To be certain, you can have it added specifically to your policy as what’s known as a ‘Named Peril’. That is, if it isn’t already included.
A ‘Named Peril’ is a specific threat or peril that’s deliberately named on your insurance policy. Named Perils are usually related to environmental threats, and many insurance companies will have a policy that ensures you get nothing if the damage is caused by an act of nature that wasn’t named on the policy.
Other insurance policies can operate differently, with what’s commonly known as an Open Perils policy. This means that most reasonable damages will be covered, including hail damage, as long as it hasn’t been specifically excluded from the list of covered damages when you purchase the policy. For example, you might choose to lower your premium by excluding coverage of damage from earthquakes, for instance, if you don’t believe this will be a threat.
How Much Damage Will Be Covered?
Homeowners Insurance will vary in terms of how much financial reimbursement you will be entitled to. The insurance company will need to assess how much damage has been caused and if any of it was preventable.
In the first instance, you should always remember that your insurance policy shouldn’t be your first layer of protection. Always try to protect your property from damage where you can, especially if a big storm has been forecast.
The contents of your home and the structure itself will be insured against hail damage, including the roof, windows and the sidings. External structures on your property, including fences or railings, might not be covered, however.
If your car is parked in the garage, and it still sustains damage, you could claim compensation for this too. If it’s outside, then auto insurance would cover it instead.
How Do I Claim For Hail Damage?
Okay, so you’ve been hit hard by a hail storm. Your siding might have sustained damage, tiles might have been ripped off the roof, and windows could have been smashed.
The first thing to do is to contact your insurance provider. Have your policy details ready and be prepared to tell them about the extent of the damage.
To make the claim, it’s helpful to take pictures and make notes of the extent of the damage, so it’s clear that you have evidence to back up your claim. This is particularly important the larger your claim gets, as insurance companies might try and battle their way out of paying.
Always Check the Small Print
Of course, the world of insurance is a world of small print and tedious wording, and every Homeowners insurance policy has distinct terms and conditions. You must always check the small print before signing for any new policy. Take the time to understand the policy wording and the fine details, to make sure that you are covered in the event of a hail storm.
If in doubt, it might be worth calling in a professional to dissect the complicated terms of the policy. Overlook something, and you could stand to lose out if your home is damaged during a hail storm.
Looking for the Best Defense against Hail? Contact Us Today!
Here at A-to-Z Roofing & Exteriors, we know just how unpredictable the Colorado weather can be. Contact us today to find out how we can meet your roofing needs and protect your home from hail storms.