Pros and Cons of Wood Shakes

Pros & Cons of Wood Shakes

Roofs with wood shingles are a thing of beauty. They have a pleasing look that gives your home a lot of character. Due to the nature of wood no two roofs will look the same. Wood allows the house to breathe and also helps to insulate the attic.

The appearance of a wooden roof is beyond compare to many. Wooden roofs have many issues that offset their beauty though. These problems have become so large and commonplace that many insurance companies require homeowners to replace them. This puts the homeowner in a jam since you risk losing coverage or having your premiums skyrocket. If you decide to try a new insurance carrier you run the same risk of having to pay a large premium or being denied coverage altogether. Some carriers may continue to insure your home but they may put a roof exclusion on the policy.

The main issue with insurance carriers is that they view caring for your roof as a maintenance issue. If your roof leaks and causes damage to your home they have to pay for those damages. It is up to you to maintain your roof in such a manner that it does not leak and cause damage that they have to pay for. In their view the insurance company is there for catastrophic losses.

The extent of wear on a wooden roof varies. There are many factors that play a role in the life of wood shingle roofs. The slope of the roof, the grade of the product and attic space ventilation all play big parts in the life of the roof.  One very major issue on roofs with wood shingles is that they are not rated by fire safety codes. Some use wipe-on or spray-on retardants which offer less protection and have to be reapplied every few years. The fire issue is a major concern for insurance companies. Embers blown from a fire down the street could cause a fire in a home a distance away.

Insurance companies have become wary of insuring homes with wood shingles on their roofs. The cons of having these types of roofs greatly outweigh their beauty in the eyes of many insurance carriers. If you have a wooden roof on your home don’t be surprised to find your insurance company asking you to replace it. If not they may drop you, raise your rates greatly or exclude the roof on your homeowners policy. Even as the aesthetics of a wooden roof make it a joy to behold, your insurance company may not have the same view!