Tips To Make Sure Your Deck Is Up To Code

Keeping Your Deck Up To “Code Upgrade” Coverage

Recently one of our project managers was called out to a property to provide a roof estimate and answer some questions for a homeowner. He inspected the roof and spoke with the homeowner, and he came back to the office with this story.

Preface:  Before plywood was used for roof decking, 1×6 wood planks were used, usually leaving a gap (1/8 to 3 inches) between the planks.

Redecking a roof is costly and adds thousands of dollars to a roof estimate.

Background: This home was built in 1895 and had spaced plank decking.

The customer had her roof replaced about 10 years ago and instead of re-decking the roof, the contractor filled the gaps between wood planks with 2x2s leaving a ¼ inch of space.

This is strongly against the manufacturer’s installation specifications and violates code.

Story:  Last summer, a huge hail storm hit her neighborhood. She knew that her roof was totaled, and that she would also have to redeck the roof.  So the homeowner contacted her insurance company to file a claim and get her roof replaced. Later she found out some bad news.

As it turns out, the homeowner didn’t have Code Upgrade Coverage on her home insurance policy. Code Upgrade means that in the event of an insurance claim, the physical structure of the home will be replaced according to current code. With Code Upgrade Coverage, these costs are included as part of the settlement money.  No Code Upgrade Coverage = No insurance money to redeck the roof.

Unfortunately, this homeowner will have to pay thousands of dollars out of pocket for redecking.

Conclusion: Every homeowner should make sure they have Code Upgrade Coverage.  It costs almost nothing (1-2% of the total policy) and can end up saving you thousands of dollars in an insurance settlement.

Call your insurance agent today to make sure you have Code Upgrade Coverage! And call Excel Roofing for any questions about redecking or any of your roofing needs.

Understanding Your Clue Report

Most insurance companies subscribe to a service called CLUE (Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange) generated by LexisNexis.

CLUE is a claims history database that enables insurance companies to access historical consumer claims information.  This national database clearinghouse not only tracks claims made by individuals, but also tracks claims made for a specific property, giving you a report similar to a credit score.

Claims Monitoring and your CLUE Report

The claims you file, including roof inspections that you request from insurance companies (even the ones that don’t result in a paid claim) will most likely be part of your CLUE report.  At renewal time, your current insurer will review your claims history as well as your current CLUE report to set your premiums, and may cancel you if you have a bad report like having too many claims. If you decide to shop for new insurance, the other companies have access to your claims history through your CLUE report.

Your claim history follows you just like a credit score.

So even if you buy a new house and move, your past claim history follows you.  Information is also tracked about specific properties.

If a property is identified as having hail damage from the storm 5 years ago (yes, storm history is also tracked), and then a new claim is later filed for the damage, your insurance company will know the property claim history and if fraud is being attempted.

Because filing a claim (requesting a roof inspection from your insurance company triggers a claim) will adversely affect your report, you shouldn’t call your insurance company unless you’re sure they will pay you a claim.  The Door-Knockers are always going to tell you to call your insurance company, guaranteed.

The best advice is to call a reputable roofing company, like Excel Roofing and have them do an honest inspection of your roof before you call your insurance company.

If you’re interested in having Excel Roofing come inspect your roof, call us today at 303-761-6400.

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