Lower Home Insurance Costs by Protecting Your Roof from Hail Damage

home insurance costsHail damage is one result of severe weather that many homeowners don’t always adequately plan for. Despite the destruction hail can cause to a roof, in particular, storms incorporating these massive ice stones are uncommon enough for people to assume they’re not as destructive as windstorms like tornadoes or hurricanes.

But with severe storms sometimes packing hail as large as 5 inches in diameter, they should definitely not be taken for granted. By proactively protecting your roof from hail damage, you can not only spare your property, but also help lower your home insurance costs.

Hail Damage Contributes to Billions in Losses

A presentation given in 2012 by the Insurance Information Institution (I.I.I.) and Munich Re revealed that tornado-hail activity contributed to almost $8.8 billion in losses by the middle of last year. In 2008, hailstorms alone caused almost $1 billion in damage.

The reason the insurance losses associated with hailstones are so high is that even small ones can smash roofs, shatter windows and leave pockmarks inside that could result in thousands of dollars in damage to a home.

Some hailstones drop as far as tens of thousands of feet in the air and reach speeds of up to 90 miles per hour by the time they reach the ground, resulting in damage to a roof or other parts of the home that can be astronomical.

Protect Roof from Hail and Lower Homeowners Insurance Costs

One great benefit of homeowners insurance is that even a standard policy covers hail damage. While it’s great to know your home is covered in this scenario, it’s important to also note that filing a home insurance claim could result in higher costs from paying your deductible, and possibly suffering an increase in premium costs.

If you want to avoid higher insurance costs while sparing your roof of unnecessary hail damage, consider the following tips from the Institute for Business and Home Safety:

  • Buy impact-resistance materials: When searching for shingles or other roofing materials, look for some with an Underwriters Laboratory (UL) 2218 Class 3 or 4 rating (Class 4 shows the most resistance to hard objects when hit twice in the same place).
  • Check roofs regularly: Have your roof checked at least once a year for loose or missing shingles.
  • Re-roof when necessary: If you find that shingles or other roofing materials are loose, be sure to re-roof as soon as possible with impact-resistance materials.

It’s easy to assume the materials already placed on a roof are sufficient enough to withstand the force of a hail storm, but this is not always the case. To be sure your roof is protected from hail damage — and your homeowners insurance costs remain low — take the precautions necessary before the next storm arrives.