How to Mitigate the Damage to Your Home from a Wind or Hail Storm
Ultimate Wind & Hail Damage Guide For Homeowners: Mitigating Damage After Hail Storm
A homeowner’s insurance policy requires you, the homeowner, to mitigate any damage to your home. This means it is your responsibility as the homeowner to stop any further damage from occurring to your home after the wind or hail storm. Here are some things that you can do to mitigate the damage done by wind or hail storm:
Broken/cracked skylights and windows: If you have holes in your skylights and windows, cover them with plastic. Remember it’s your responsibility as a homeowner to eliminate any further leaks or damage that could be cause by the hail damage.
Leaks in the roof: If your roof is leaking, you need to tarp it. If it’s still raining and you can’t tarp your roof, put buckets in the leak area to prevent water from damaging the interior anymore than it already has.
It’s best to call a Qualified Local Contractor to tarp your roof for safety purposes and to ensure that it’s done correctly. Your insurance company will reimburse you for all the incurred expenses.
Blown off/damaged siding: Similarly with the roof damage, if your siding is hanging, loose, or missing, have your QLC tarp the siding to help prevent any further damage to the interior.
Falling tree damage: If a tree fell on your home after a wind or hail storm, call a tree company to come out and inspect and remove the tree immediately. Then have a QLC come out to tarp the damaged area and mitigate any further damage. Ask the contractor to refer you to a good tree company if you don’t have one.
Tip: Keep in mind: if your tree falls on the neighbor’s property, it’s your neighbor’s insurance company who will be responsible for the damage repair. If neighbor’s tree falls on your home, your insurance company will be responsible.
Before Cleanup Begins
In storm damage claims, as in all insurance claims, you will have to provide the proof of hail damage to insurance company.
Therefore before a cleanup begins- make sure you do a few things:
- Document the insurance loss with photos.
- If you can- collect the hail stones in a plastic bag and put it in a freezer.
- Record an inventory of personal property damage.
- Save all the receipts for any immediate work completed.
If a hail and/or wind storm has caused damage to your property, you will be facing a lengthy and not always straight-forward process of dealing with your insurance company’s adjuster.
An insurance adjuster is thoroughly trained in all aspects of the claims process, including the possibility in minimizing your claim. Therefore, to maximize your chances of getting the full amount of money that you are entitled to from your insurance company- it is important to follow the best practices listed above.
When the Wind and/or Hail Storm Strikes:
In case you are reading this but you haven’t experienced a hail storm yet, remember that weather patterns have changed a lot in the last 5-6 years and there is a high likelihood that you will experience hail damage within the next few years- so keep these things in mind:
If you are outside when a wind or hail storm hits, go inside and stay away from any windows and doors, because glass could shatter depending on the size of the hail.
Bring your vehicle(s) into the garage or a covered area if possible to reduce the damage to them.
Remove or tie down any non-fixed items outside (patio furniture, kids’ toys, bicycles, etc.), because hail storms are usually accompanied by strong wind that can throw these items against your or neighbor’s house.
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