When you need your roof repaired, it’s rarely because you just feel like having a fresh look; instead, it’s because your home has been destroyed by the weather. This is a confusing, stressful time, and a time to be weary of roofing scams. Only trust reputable roofing contractors. Remember, if it’s too good to be true, it likely is a scam or a big fat lie in the making, and either way, close the door on that and do your research. Texas has one of the highest rates of fraud in the roofing repair industry. Don’t become a statistic, and follow this list of some of the known scams to steer clear of:
- You don’t have to pay your deductible
- No, no, no – read your insurance policy, it clearly states that you are responsible for a portion of the claim, that is your deductible. In the area of deductibles, home insurance works the same way medical insurance does. Anyone who says otherwise is trying to scam you. There is ABSOLUTELY NO WAY AROUND THE DEDUCTIBLE. PERIOD.
- False Contingency Contracts
- Contingency Contracts are a very good thing, but beware of the fine print.
- GOOD CONTRACT – Based on insurance approval and will become null and void if the insurance company does not approve the work
- BAD CONTRACT – You owe X amount for the company representing you, or you agree to replace your roof at your own expense for an undetermined amount until they fill in the blank
- Full Payment Upfront
- This is a scam. It is industry standard for partial upfront deposit depending on project, price, and/or special orders of the materials
- Roofers As Insurance Adjusters
- You must hold a public insurance adjuster’s license to act as an insurance adjustor.
- GOOD – It is legal and okay for a highly experienced roofing company who work with home improvement companies, like the one you already have coverage with, who will meet with your insurance adjustor and help them find all of the storm damage on your property. The expertise of the roofing contractor are for your benefit. Roofing companies offers assistance to ensure you get everything fixed that is needed, sometimes it’s not as obvious to the insurance adjustor.
- Roofing Solicitors
- When someone comes unsolicited, knocking on your door, this is a bad sign. The best roofing companies stay busy because they get plenty of referral business through happy customers. Another way to look at it is if ‘Joe Smo’ is driving around scanning your home uninvited, you didn’t call for a free estimate, then what is his motive, because it won’t be your best interests.
- Storm Chasers
- It’s obvious that after a bad storm, repairs and replacements will need to be done all over the impacted area, and scammers know this prime picking, so they follow the storms, pretending to be a local repair company, saying all the right things, asking for payment upfront, and a too-good-to-be-true sales pitch. The best way to avoid this is to do your research, check roofing resources to ensure the local company, really is local, ask your neighbors for referrals, and check third-party companies to see if the roofing company is reputable as they claim to be.
Although in a time of need, time is usually against you, and when the roof of your home or business has been destroyed, time is more of a luxury; however, don’t rush your decision for your roofing repair company. Repairing or replacing your roof is a huge investment and a major priority for home functionality and worth, so the decision shouldn’t be made hastily. Don’t be afraid to call around to various local companies and get multiple estimates. You can also trust your insurance company for known referrals. You will be glad in the end that you took the necessary steps to ensure you got a solid roof replacement from a reputable local roofing contractor.