This week Oklahoma was hit with another Tornado. The aftermath of these storms are very trying times. It’s our business to help people repair their roof and we make it a priority to help make the process as easy as possible.
Learning Lessons from the Tulsa Hailstorm of April, 2008
In April of 2008 Tulsa was hit with the largest hailstorm on record. I had bought the Turner Roofing & Sheet Metal business just three months before. Any business owner will tell you that the first 60 days of owning a business are the most difficult and mother nature had a way of making mine, a little more interesting.
The day after the 2008 hailstorm, the Turner crew set out to survey the damage. We like to put up yard signs in areas where the damage is really bad so people know that there is a local business ready to help. We noticed that a lot of out of state signs had been put up by what our industry calls, “ambulance chasers.” Basically, these are companies that are not licensed by the state and usually make outlandish promises like guaranteeing people that they’ll get a free roof from insurance. Unfortunately, these type of people prey on people not understanding their insurance policies.
We have six phones here at Turner and after that storm hit in 2008, all six were lit up for a week solid. There was a lot of damage out there. People would have their insurance adjusters come out and take a look at the damage to make a claim. The insurance company would then authorize a certain amount of money (depending on the hail and wind policy) to fix the roof. However, because the storm was so big, the roofing manufacturing companies (the companies who supply the materials) took advantage of the market and increased their prices. The end result was the amount insurance companies had authorized to repair the roof was not enough to cover the full repair. We ended up hiring a full time person to communicate with our customers’ insurance companies to explain the situation and get the higher price adjusted.
How to Spot Roof Damage After a Storm
If your home or business has been through a big storm you may be wondering how to tell if you have roof damage.
There are a few tell-tale signs to look for roof damage from a storm.
Damage to gutters: If your gutters are showing dents or other physical damage there is a strong likelihood that your roof has been damaged.
Debris from Trees: If you have a tree that has started to bloom and see a bunch of debris from the tree scattered all over the ground, it means wind levels were high enough they could have done roof damage.
Damage to Cars: If you see damage to cars, such as, cracked windshields or dents in the body of the car, it’s a sign that there is damage to your roof.
Shingles: If you have a newer home, chances are you have asphalt shingles. If you notice that the asphalt granules are in your gutters or on the ground, there is likely roof damage. If you look at your roof and notice bald spots on your asphalt shingles then there is a high chance you have roof damage.
If you have an older home, you may see wood shakes or shingles scattered about. When you see that, you’ve got roof damage.
How Can You Prepare for Roof Damage
You can’t prevent damage from a big storm any more than you can control the weather. However, you can make sure you are familiar with your homeowner’s insurance policy when it comes to wind and hail, preferably before a storm hits. Sometimes policies will be an ACV (actual cash value) policy while others will pay a percentage. Contact your agent or dust off that policy to see where you stand if and when damage occurs.
If you need someone you can trust to help repair your roof we hope you give us a call. We’ve been serving the greater Tulsa area for 50 years and will help you through this difficult process.
Stay safe everyone,
Owner and President of Turner Roofing and Sheet Metal