Friday, June 20, 2014

Roof Troubles

On May 23rd here in Columbia, South Carolina, we had one doozy of a thunderstorm.  Awesomely, it included golf-ball sized hail.  My car was in the garage.  Scott's car wasn't**.  It sure took a beating.  Although it didn't show up well in pictures, it looked like the car had chicken pox scars all over it.  Maybe you can see the one in this photo?

(look at the door handle, then up and to the left a little)

The right side mirror was busted, too.

After a phone call to the insurance company, a visit to a body shop for an estimate, and a week in the shop, the car is looking much better.  No more chicken pox!

We also had a rep from our insurance, USAA, come look at our roof, deck, and fence.  He said other than lots of dents on the aluminum vents on the roof and downspouts for the gutters, the roof looked great.  Based on his assessment, the work that needed to be done to fix the dented vents wouldn't even add up to our deductible.  He was convincing, seemingly thorough (up on the roof for several minutes), talked in detail about the type of shingles and the age and when we should think about a new roof (about 5 years from now).  

Phew.  Our roof was fine.  I felt relieved.

Over the next few weeks, however, three of our neighbors have had their roofs assessed by their own insurance people and are getting new roofs due to the hail damage.  


This makes me question the information I received about our roof. All of our roofs are approximately the same age, within a few months of each other.  To the untrained eye, the roof materials seem to be the same.  Our houses are on a cul-de-sac and therefore all face slightly different angles, which could matter in this equation, depending on the direction the hail was pelting down and such.  

This week I called a totally random roofing company to have them come take a look.  The guy was up there approximately 3 minutes. He came down and said yes, there is hail damage.  He recommended a new roof.  I told him what the insurance adjuster said.  He offered to meet with the adjuster at the house and walk the roof together to see if they can agree on the work that needs to be done.  I like that idea.  This is the direction I'm heading in at the moment.  It's all I know to do.

Here's the thing:  I don't know who to trust!!  Obviously the insurance agent is looking out for the best interests of the insurance company.  They don't want to pay for a new roof if they don't have to.  Then the roofing guy comes out, looking out for HIS company's best intere$t, and recommends a new roof.  


Do any of you have good family friends or someone you trust implicitly that could come make a really objective recommendation?!  Because making the roofing people and the insurance people take lie detector tests seems a little extreme, but I've pondered that option...

**Sadly for our friend, Jason, his car was at our house getting pelted along with Scott's.  Had Jason been at home, this wouldn't have happened.  So very, very sorry Jason!!


Martha Brady said...

With golf-ball sized hail, it’s really a huge relief that your car was safely inside your garage when it happened. Unfortunately, you can't say the same for Scott. Thankfully, everything went smoothly with the insurance claim, and the car has received all the repair it needed. And hopefully it will be the same for your roof. And speaking of which, how is it?

Martha Brady @ Indianapolis Dent Company

Rachel said...

We have USAA for our insurance for home, car etc. Usually they are fab, but we had a very similar issue with them with our roof. A tornado came through the neighborhood a couple of years ago and the adjuster said there was minimal damage to the roof and that there was no rush to get it repaired, that it wouldn't leak and so on. The next time we had a thunderstorm we had to put buckets all over the floor to catch all of the water that was pouring into the house.

Thankfully when we contacted USAA about it, they were apologetic and paid to have all of the necessary repairs done. However it would've been nice if the adjuster had got it right the first time around. :-/

Catherine Burns said...

Golf sized hail is certainly damaging, there is no doubt about that. Since everyone in the neighborhood had hail damage and the age of the roofs are about the same, the estimate that goes along with what they got is the one I would trust. If I had to pick one. You want to hire an independent authority.

Catherine Burns @ Easton Roofing LLC

Pleasance Faast said...

What a dreadful hail storm - it's awful to have to take care of so much damage. I can see the dents on Scott's car, what a shame! Hopefully you can figure something out about your roof. It would be quite difficult to decide who to trust, both want one extreme or the other. I hope someone will be honest!