Beware of Fraudulent Roofers: 5 Ways to Avoid Roofing Scams after Storms & Hail DamageJune 6, 2017
When hail and storms damage homes, scam artists like fraudulent roofers can come out of the woodwork to try to take advantage of unsuspecting homeowners. Knowing how to spot and avoid fraudulent roofers and roofing scams can be central to protecting your home, your finances, and possibly a hail damage claim.
How to Avoid Roofing Scams
From storm-chasing contractors to unlicensed roofers, roofing scams can come in various forms. No matter what roofing scam may come your way after a storm, here is what you can do to avoid being taken by a fraudulent roofer:
- Be cautious of door-to-door roofers & do your homework – When a roofer knocks on your door uninvited, do not automatically assume that (s)he is a licensed, qualified roofing professional. Research that professional to verify if (s)he (and/or the associated company) is legitimate, licensed, and insured. Also, check:
- The roofer’s status with the Better Business Bureau
- Online reviews to evaluate the customer experience and complaint history.
- Get at least a few bids in writing – Request that all written bids be provided on official company letterhead (that includes the address and contact information of the roofer). As you get and review bids from different companies, carefully check what the bid does and doesn’t cover, and compare these bids to the estimate for your insurance company. Also, don’t automatically go with the cheapest bid; it could be shortchanging the work or relying on sub-par materials.
- Resist high-pressure tactics – Examples of these high-pressure tactics can include pushing property owners into signing paperwork and/or handing over a down payment ASAP – before they have a chance to talk to a spouse or get other bids. Don’t let a roofer push you into doing anything. Remember, a reputable roofer will usually be willing to:
- Let you do your own research, get other bids, and get back to them
- Put up their own money to cover the repair costs and receive repayment from an insurance company.
- Try to go with a reputable, local company with a verified physical address – Beware of “traveling” roofers that don’t have a fixed address. Going with a local, reputable roofer can give you peace of mind that you’ll be able to easily follow up with the roofer if or when necessary in the future. For instance, with a local roofing company, it will likely be easier to follow up if the work isn’t completed or you need to pursue a warranty claim in the future. Here, it’s also a good idea to visit the local roofer’s office to verify that it does, in fact, exist.
- Do NOT pay the full amount of the repair upfront – Paying in full, upfront can result in incomplete or shoddy repairs. Instead, pay ½ upfront and the balance upon completion (after you have verified that the work is complete. For more extensive damage repairs, you may want to follow the rule of thirds, paying 1/3 up front, 1/3 at a mid-point of the repair, and the final 1/3 after the job has been finished (verified as complete). It’s also advisable to request lien waivers to ensure that payment has been made for all of the work, materials, subcontractors, etc.
Whether you need a list of reputable roofers or you need experienced help with a hail damage claim, contact the Amaro Law Firm.
Struggling with an Insurer Over a Hail Damage Claim? Contact a Hail Damage Claim Lawyer at the Amaro Law Firm
A hail damage claim lawyer at the Amaro Law Firm is ready to evaluate your claim and help you position it for success. We represent clients from across the U.S. in hail damage claims.
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