How Different Roofing Materials Relate to Insurance

Different roofing materials relate to insurance policy rates. New, improved roofing materials can help mitigate damage caused by weather events like hail, heavy rainfall, snow and ice. When a homeowner installs better roofing materials, insurance policy rates should be reduced.

Certain areas of the country are more prone than other areas to different types of structural damage. For example, the Midwest and states of Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska encounter heavy hail damage. Colorado has the most storms with large hail and stormy weather coming over the Continental Divide and Rocky Mountains. Extremely heavy thunderstorms with damaging lighting, strong winds and hail occur by the thousands every year. Other areas of the country will find winter weather causes damage, and the West Coast is notorious for earthquake damage. Even extreme heat can cause roof damage so the type of roofing materials that are used on homes will make a difference that translates to higher or lower insurance rates.

Basic roofing materials:

  1. Asphalt shingles – traditional and widely used – organic or fiberglass compounds (more durable)
  2. Wood shingles or shakes – present a higher fire damage potential than other types
  3. Tile – clay or concrete, durable but adds extra weight to a building structure
  4. Slate – close to indestructible, more expensive and requires skill to install
  5. Metal – New style shingles for homes and commercial buildings, fire-resistant but can be damaged
  6. Synthetics – imitations of other styles but may not have identical properties

Lower risk is associated with more durable roofing materials; insurance rates for homes that use those materials should be lower also. In areas where weather causes much damage, it is wise to use the most durable materials to keep insurance policy rates lowest. Ask your insurance agent how materials you want to use in your home or that are present in a prospective purchase will impact insurance rates.