Roofing scams: property owners be wary after storm | The Daily Courier

There is probably no other attraction for scammers who are more prey to homeowners than a roof-top disaster. With the hailstorm that hit the Prescott area on Sunday, July 11th, it’s very easy for fraudulent roofing companies to exploit unsuspecting homeowners.

Unscrupulous companies wanting to make a quick buck and are hiring “boots on the ground” agents to go door to door trying to do business. There are local roofers who provide professional and superior service as opposed to the other “roofers” who offer the other end of the spectrum like frustration, sloppy work and unethical mannerisms.

The roof is one of the most important parts of a home and it is vital that homeowners use reliable, reputable roofers for repairs and replacements.

Be careful with door-to-door inquiries. Be careful with high pressure tactics. Do not pay money upfront, never pay in cash, never pay for work not done or for the purchase of materials, and never pay a person. It is important to get three bids and always be careful with significantly lower bids. When hiring a roofer, it’s not just about the basic price. You should look at the entire contract and the service provided. I’ve had numerous calls about installation issues and in many of these cases the homeowner picked the lowest bid. Always check and update the current license status by calling YCCA.

Be careful with the roofer who tells you it won’t cost you anything and that they work with insurance companies. Don’t just go with the guy walking around your neighborhood with a bunch of signs in the courtyards. Be wary of non-local businesses. Take advantage of local, long-standing businesses that support the area and community that the employees and owners live in.

If you feel like you have been pressured to sign a contract, call the company back and cancel the contract.

It is important to know what type of shingles are on your roof. Obtain a written contract detailing the work, current clapboard removal or reclamation, material product and manufacturer name, amount of bundles and check the date on the packaged clapboard. Never install something that is almost 5 years old. Never install a product with the date torn off or blackened.

Avoid the sting and do your research.

Here are the notes again:

• Never pay in cash;

• Never pay an individual;

• Contract, Contract, Contract – Get a detailed written contract;

• Never allow the roofer to contact your insurance carrier;

• Check whether or not a permit is required for the work;

• Let the contractor withdraw approval if necessary;

• Check insurance for workers’ compensation and general liability;

• Be wary of high pressure and door-to-door sales; and,

• Never let a roofing company inspect your roof and say you have hail damage, call your insurance company first.

By following these strategies you can avoid many, if not all, of the possible scams or problems that might arise. As they say, “It is better not to be wise and to hit stupid.”

For more information, call 928-778-0400.

Sandy Griffis is the executive director of the Yavapai County Contractors Association.

Comments are closed.