Hail is a common and significant cause of property damage. While your home is meant to endure the effects of it, there’s really nothing you can do to make the dwelling completely hail-proof. Your porch, being one of the most exposed portions of your dwelling, is especially susceptible to this hazard. That’s why your homeowners insurance will usually cover hail damage to your porch.
Still, you must fully analyze the specifics of your policy in order to truly know if your home insurance covers hail damage to your porch. Keep these ideas in mind when trying to do so.
What Caused The Damage?
When hail falls onto a hard surface, the force of the impact can cause significant damage in minutes. The larger the size of the hail, the greater the damage often is. In some cases, a few dents or splinters on your porch are easily repaired. In others, however, hail could cause significant structural damage to the porch, even making it completely unsafe to use until repairs are made. And besides the structure itself, any awnings, eaves or furnishings stored on the porch are also susceptible to damage.
In cases of significant porch damage, your homeowners policy will likely cover the costs of the repairs. However, limitations will exist. For example, if you fail to repair minor hail damage, and that existing damage continues to get worse until it becomes a big problem, then your insurer might deny your claim. The fact that you neglected to repair a small problem when you had a chance does not fall under a home insurer’s definition of covering unpreventable, unavoidable losses.
What You Can Expect In A Claim
When you file a claim for hail damage, you will have to consider a few different factors:
- The value of the damage will have to exceed the cost of your dwelling insurance deductible for the plan to pay out. If it doesn’t, then your plan won’t compensate you.
- Even if your damage cost exceeds the deductible value, you have to weigh the value of actually accepting the settlement, as opposed to simply paying for your losses out of pocket.
- Your insurer must inspect the hail damage to determine both whether it is covered and how much the repairs are likely to cost. If repairs are not possible, then you’ll need to get a quote for replacement.
- If the insurer learns that the porch already had damage due to wear & tear or neglect, then they might not honor a claim.
- The coverage limits listed in your plan will ultimately determine the amount of settlement you will eventually receive.
- Most of the time, you must file a hail claim within a certain amount of time in order for your insurer to honor the claim.
Though there might be potential hurdles to filing a hail damage claim, you can easily learn more about the benefits within your own home insurance plan by speaking to your insurance agent.
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