Weathering the (Hail) Storm

Hail season is here, and it’s already in full swing. Hailstorms typically occur during the spring and summer months, when warmer weather fuels severe thunderstorms. It peaks in the central plains from April to early July, but slightly later in the Midwest and Mountain West. If you live in these areas, you already know that the key to protecting your property is taking proactive measures before a storm.

The damage inflicted by hailstorms can be extensive, depending on factors such as the size and density of the hailstones, the duration of the storm, and the susceptibility of the affected property. One home can sustain significant harm, while the house next door is unscathed.


Hailstones can puncture roofing materials which may lead to leaks, water damage, and structural issues. Additionally, siding and windows are at risk of being damaged by hail and flying debris. And, of course, vehicles left outdoors during a hailstorm are frequently left with dented bodies, shattered windows, and damaged paintwork.

Here are some steps you can take now to minimize your risk of hail damage:

Roof maintenance. One of the most vulnerable areas of your home is the roof. Regular inspections identify vulnerabilities that make it susceptible to damage. Repairing loose or damaged roofing materials in advance helps prevent water infiltration and structural issues.

Evaluate fixtures. As skylights and vents become brittle over time, you might want to upgrade to newer versions designed to better resist severe storm damage.

Install impact-resistant materials. Consider investing in impact-resistant roofing materials such as concrete tiles or thicker Class-4 asphalt shingles which are designed to withstand hail impact better than traditional materials. You may also want to consider having car covers on-hand, as they help reduce hail damage to autos, trucks, and recreational vehicles.

Limit valuable outdoor items. Expensive outdoor furniture and vehicles should remain in a covered area through the spring, so there is less need to quickly move them immediately prior to a weather event. If relocating is not possible, you can shield them with protective tarps.

Prune landscaping. Trim trees and large shrubs to minimize the risk of branches breaking off or causing damage.

Consider storm shutters. Installing protective shutters or screens over windows protects them from hail impact. Alternatively, applying protective film can reduce the risk of shattering.


Even with preventative measures in place, hailstorms can still cause significant damage to your property. Homeowners insurance typically covers some damage caused by hailstorms, however, you should review your policy carefully to understand the extent of your coverage and any limitations or exclusions that may apply.

If you live in an area prone to hailstorms, you may want to consider purchasing supplemental hail insurance or a separate policy for high-value items like vehicles or custom landscaping.

In the event you suffer a loss, document the damage with photographs before and after the area is cleaned. Be sure to cover any openings to keep water from damaging your home or car’s interior. Then, call your insurance provider promptly to advise them of the loss.


It’s not uncommon to hear about unscrupulous characters who prey on homeowners after a storm. One popular scam involves "storm chasers" who travel to affected areas and offer services door-to-door or through unsolicited phone calls. They may try to pressure you into signing a contract or offer discounts for immediate payment. In return, you’ll often receive poor workmanship or inferior materials.

Other dishonest contractors demand upfront payments and then disappear without completing the job. They may claim that materials need to be purchased in advance, but leave you with out-of-pocket expenses and unresolved repairs.

Another ruse involves individuals or companies that claim extensive repairs are necessary, even for minor damage, or inflate the cost of materials and labor. In some cases, they may even cause additional damage in order to justify higher repair costs.


You may feel particularly vulnerable after a hailstorm where you’ve sustained damage, so it’s important to keep a level head. Make sure you thoroughly research contractors before hiring them, and check their licensing, insurance, and references. In addition, always obtain multiple estimates from reputable in-state contractors and be wary of those that are significantly higher or lower than others.

And of course, be cautious of unsolicited offers for repair services that pressure you into making quick decisions. Avoid large upfront payments or signing contracts without carefully reviewing the terms.

Report any suspicious activity to local authorities or consumer protection agencies.


At Lockton, we’re here to help you implement proactive risk mitigation strategies or support you if you suffer a loss. Our concierge claims management approach allows us to handle claims on your behalf to minimize disruption to your life and lifestyle. We’ll even help you coordinate temporary housing or rental vehicles during the restoration process.

By taking proactive steps to protect your property and ensuring you have adequate insurance coverage, you can weather a hailstorm with greater peace of mind. While unpredictable, being prepared can help mitigate their impact and safeguard your bottom line.

For more information, please visit our webpage (opens a new window).

The information provided in this article is for educational purposes only and should not be considered professional advice. Please consult with a Lockton representative for information regarding specific insurance products and services.