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Replacing a roof is expensive, but it may be cheaper in the long run. If you don’t fix it, you’ll be stuck paying home insurance premiums until you do. In lieu of that, contact your state’s department of insurance and ask if there's a high-risk home insurance pool in your state.

Otherwise, you'll have to go with the mortgage company's insurance. Home insurers don't like clients with maintenance problems, fire risks or safety issues. Those situations lead to claims, and insurance companies want to reduce risk as much as possible.

An insurance company considers maintenance your responsibility so it will not pay for roof damage if it was caused by lack of maintenance. But if you have a standard HO-3 home insurance policy, your insurer will likely pay for damages to furniture and other parts of your home as a result of the leak -- if there are any. Water damage is one of the most common reasons people make homeowner insurance claims, and it can cost thousands of dollars.

Lack of maintenance leads to many insurance claims. Keep your home insurance rates down by keeping up with repairs, which minimize claims that can drive up rates.

For more detail about home insurance, read about water damage: seven home insurance scenarios and home insurance basics.