When a wind event such as a tornado or
hurricane cause roof damage to your home, the first thing most people
do is file an insurance claim. Due to the large number catastrophe
claims, it might be several days to several weeks before your
insurance adjuster can come and inspect wind damage.
There are several things the homeowner needs to do to prepare for the insurance inspection to make sure you are following the guidelines of the policy.
The first thing is to protect your home from additional damage. Your insurance agent will also advise you to do this because it is a condition of the insurance policy (contract). This means covering any broken windows, boarding up holes in your home from where tree limbs hit it, put a roof tarp over missing shingles, and pumping out any water from flooding.
Before you do the above steps take photos of the condition of the items prior to any temporary repairs being made. This way your adjuster can view how your property looked prior to your clean-up efforts. Make sure you have these files available when your adjuster arrives at the appointment.
An open hole in your roof can cause water to enter and ceilings to collapse. Water can also enter into the electrical system and cause fires. Covering your roof after a storm makes sure you comply with the conditions of the policy as well as protects your family. Clean-up of building materials (debris removal) and tarp cost (temporary repairs) are not only recommended but covered under most insurance policies.
The last step is to start to gather estimates so once you get your insurance settlement; you have contractors lined up to start the permanent repairs. Signing any formal agreement prior to the insurance settlement can be dangerous. It is a better idea to meet the contractors, check references, and get estimates so you can start right after your inspection.
Simply, after your hurricane damage: clean up and make temporary repairs, take photos of the damage, and get estimates so you are ready contract and begin repairs as soon as you get your insurance check.