If a Roofing Deal Seems Too Good To Be True, It Probably Is!
The season of severe storms unfortunately brings roofing scams as well. While the roofing industry has certainly gotten better over time, the sad reality is that many roofing companies are still out there running roofing scams and giving roofers a bad name. Major storms tend to bring out the worst of these shady characters, as they take advantage of desperate homeowners in their time of need.
At Dolan Roofing & Construction, we strongly value honesty, integrity, and trust. We have a lot of respect for our fellow roofers who also operate this way, and it sickens us every time we come across a homeowner who was scammed by an immoral roofing company. So with the storm season in full swing, now is a good time to educate our customers and readers about common roofing scams—and how to avoid them.
Why is storm season a time for roofing scams?
The reason why roofing scams are so common during storm season is simple: there’s more desperation to take advantage of. Storm damage to a roof is often sudden, severe, and completely unexpected. Most homeowners in this unfortunate situation simply want their roof repaired as quickly as possible and at a low cost. We totally understand that feeling, but feeling desperate often makes us more vulnerable targets for scam artists, and that’s when these roofers strike.
Three major roofing scams to watch for
While it’s unfortunate that roofing scams are so common, the good news is these scam artists aren’t often very creative. Many of them use similar tactics, so avoiding a scam is often as simple as knowing what to be wary of. Here are three of the most common scams to avoid.
The “storm chaser”
The most common tactic used by scammy roofers during storm season is “storm chasing.” These roofers will travel around, following in the path of severe storms, and knock on the doors of homeowners following a major storm. They’ll offer cut-rate roof repair services, complete the work hastily and cheaply, and leave the area immediately, never to be seen again. Their work is often shoddy, leaving your home vulnerable to the next storm to roll through.
How to avoid this scam:
Hire a roofer based in your area. Local roofers have an established reputation in your community, so you can trust that they will be around to make good on warranties and promises.
Waiving your deductible
Your deductible is the portion of your homeowners’ insurance you must pay before your provider begins covering repairs. Some roofing companies will offer to “waive” your deductible as a means of lowering the cost of roofing work. Sounds like a great deal, right?
As good as it sounds, this is actually one of the worst roofing scams you might encounter. Waiving your deductible is an illegal practice that actually constitutes insurance fraud. While it may seem like you save money, you’ll wind up paying more when your insurance company comes to collect.
How to avoid this scam:
As soon as a roofer offers to waive your deductible, close the door or hang up the phone. This practice is always illegal, and it shows that the roofer is a scam artist.
A low starting bid
Chances are, you don’t have a bunch of money socked away for when your roof is damaged by a storm. Knowing this, many con artist roofers will do their best to undercut the competition, offering incredibly low rates.
If a quote seems too good to be true, though, it probably is. Once the project begins, that low starting bid will suddenly start to creep upward. Your roofer may encounter “unforeseen problems” and cite sudden increases in material costs during the project. In the end, you pay more than you would have with another roofer.
How to avoid this scam:
This one is tricky, but the best course of action is to be suspicious of exceptionally low project bids. Ask each contractor to provide their reasoning and read through their quotes. Give more credence to those who can fully justify and explain their pricing upfront. If their bid is a bit higher, they may just be more honest (and experienced) than competing roofers.
Dolan Roofing: A Locally Based Roofer You Can Count On
We strive each and every day to uphold our values of integrity, honesty, and trust here at Dolan Roofing. As a family-owned roofing company, we know exactly how you feel when your home is damaged by severe storms: you just want someone to fix your roof with minimal headaches.
At Dolan, we treat each of our customers with the empathy we’d show our own family and friends, with completely transparent communication and honest roofing practices. Have questions or need to schedule an inspection? Contact us today! Even if you don’t choose us for your storm restoration or repair, we hope this information helps you avoid roofing scams this storm season.