When a hailstorm and high winds come through your town, they can cause tremendous damage. It’s usually not until the next morning that you see the full extent of damage caused by a storm. You may see roof shingles lying on the ground in your yard or a neighbor’s yard.
Usually, homeowners will start to get knocks on the door from roofers trying to make a quick buck. Their job is to get in, get paid, and get out. They tend to cut corners leaving you with sub-par work. They understand how insurance companies work, allowing them to collect their pay. Don’t sign up with the first roofer who shows up at your door. It may be a costly decision.
Should You Trust that Roofer Knocking on Your Door?
Be wary of individuals looking to make money off of your roofing woes. These people are typically known as storm chasers. Here are a few rules to keep in mind to avoid roofing scams after the storm has passed.
1. Don’t Rush Getting Your Roof Fixed
Even though you want your roof fixed quickly, it’s always a good idea to reach out to a locally known and established company. Your insurance company can help you too. Don’t make a rash decision. Take your time and do some research on roofing companies in your area.
Storm chasers will pressure you. They want you to sign up the same day so they can start working on your roof. They might tell you their offer is only good for one day just to get you to sign a contract. A reputable professional roofer isn’t going to knock on your door, pressuring you to sign anything to start repairs immediately. Here are some things storm chasers might say:
- We worked on a roof just down the road, and we have enough material left over to do yours. We can give you a good discount if you’re interested.
- I can help you get a new roof for practically no cost to you.
- We can handle all of the details for you.
2. Be Wary about Signing Contracts
Pushy roofers who try to get you to sign a contract right away may alter the agreement after you sign it. If you do sign it, it needs to be signed by one of the company representatives as well. And get a copy signed by both parties.
If you sign a contract without their signature, they might change things like pricing, materials, or other conditions that make the deal more favorable for them. After the work is finished, you won’t have any recourse against them because they have a contract with your signature.
3. Make Sure They Are Licensed, Insured, and Bonded
Ask to see proof of their credentials. If they lack a license, they probably lack insurance as well. You do not want to be held liable for damages or injuries caused by them. A bond is a contract that protects one party if the agreed-upon work is not completed.
Bonded contractors cost a little extra, but it protects you and your home from shady roofers. The roofers that show up after a storm may not be bonded. These so-called storm chasers will probably not be bonded.
4. Say No to Large Upfront Payments
Most reputable roofing contractors only ask for a marginal upfront down payment. Don’t shell out any cash payment based on some deal they offer. Storm chasers often look for people in need of immediate help. Always pay with a check or credit card to keep a paper trail going that you can track. If something goes wrong or something isn’t done correctly, you’ll have the information needed to refute the charges.
5. Do Your Research!
Make sure you check out any potential roofing contractors. It’s worth the time and effort to vet a roofing contractor properly. Check the Better Business Bureau for negative reviews or past grievances. Online reviews are a great indicator of a company’s past service record. Check to see what year their business was founded. A lot of these storm chasers roofing companies are gone as quickly as the storm is.
You want to hire a professional roofing contractor who has been around for a while. They should be able to provide references that will prove their validity. Location is important. Do they have a local office? Turn them down if they are out of state.
Get the Professional Help You Need After a Storm
When a storm damages your roof, you need quality help. At Brian Dawson Roofing, we are dedicated to helping you get the repairs you need. We are qualified and experienced professionals who have been around since 1999 serving St. Charles and St. Louis counties.
Our contractors are licensed, bonded, and insured. We want you to have an enjoyable, hassle-free experience. Whether you need repairs or a new roof, we are here to help.